172 user 73 critic

Monkeybone (2001)

In a coma, a cartoonist finds himself trapped within his own underground creation and must find a way to get back, while racing against his popular but treacherous character, Monkeybone.



(graphic novel "Dark Town"),

Watch Now

From $3.99 (SD) on Prime Video

3 nominations. See more awards »



Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

A naive man comes out into the world after spending 35 years in a nuclear fallout shelter.

Director: Hugh Wilson
Stars: Brendan Fraser, Alicia Silverstone, Christopher Walken
Bedazzled (2000)
Comedy | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

Hopeless dweeb Elliot Richards is granted seven wishes by the Devil to snare Allison, the girl of his dreams, in exchange for his soul.

Director: Harold Ramis
Stars: Brendan Fraser, Elizabeth Hurley, Frances O'Connor
Encino Man (1992)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.7/10 X  

When they find a frozen caveman in their back yard, two high school outcasts thaw him and introduce him to modern life while he in turn gets them to actually enjoy life.

Director: Les Mayfield
Stars: Sean Astin, Brendan Fraser, Pauly Shore
Airheads (1994)
Comedy | Crime | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

Three band members hoping for a big break head to a radio station to play their demo tape and wind up holding everyone hostage with plastic guns when the head DJ refuses to play them.

Director: Michael Lehmann
Stars: Brendan Fraser, Steve Buscemi, Adam Sandler


Cast overview, first billed only:
Herb (as David Foley)
Head Surgeon
Burger God Rep
Clarissa (as Amy D. Higgins)


In a coma, Stu Miley a cartoonist who created a comic strip called Monkeybone which features a rascal monkey. He finds himself trapped within his own underground creation and must find a way to get back, while racing against his popular but treacherous character, Monkeybone. Naturally, Monkeybone himself is there, and he and Stu quickly start fighting like cats and dogs. When Stu realizes that his sister, due to a pact they once made, is preparing to pull the plug on him, Stu makes a deal with Hypnos, the god of sleep, to help him steal a golden ticket from Death himself. But when Monkeybone takes over Stu's body and escapes to wreak havoc on the real world, Stu has to find a way to stop him before his sister pulls the plug on reality forever! Written by Anthony Pereyra {hypersonic91@yahoo.com}

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Bone 2 B Bad See more »

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for crude humor and some nudity | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

23 February 2001 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Untitled Monkeybone Project  »

Filming Locations:



Box Office


$75,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$2,685,078, 25 February 2001, Wide Release

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Henry Selick: [stop motion] Most of the characters in the coma world are stop motion puppets. See more »


When Stu is singing in the club to Julie, as he passes a table a boom shadow is visible across his face. See more »


[Stu goes into a phone booth to call the authorities and report the car crash, unaware that a large red pipe loosened by the crash is starting to tilt over towards the booth]
Julie: [sees the pipe start to move] Stu!
[Stu turns around a waves to her, then turns back to the phone as the pipe starts to fall]
Julie: [screams] STU!
[Stu waves at her again, and the pipe falls on the booth, putting Stu in a coma]
See more »

Crazy Credits

Lisa Zane is listed in the opening credits, however due to editing her entire time on screen is only about 20 seconds. See more »


Referenced in Coraline (2009) See more »


Written by Tom Maxwell
Performed by Squirrel Nut Zippers
Courtesy of Mammoth Records
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Provides enough positives to outweigh the negatives; worth a watch to experience the dazzling images-but I would not see it again for free. *** (out of four)
3 March 2001 | by See all my reviews

MONKEYBONE / (2001) *** (out of four)

By Blake French:

"Monkeybone" takes us on an energetic and lively roller-coaster ride through the bizarre mind of a troubled cartoonist trapped inside a nightmare of his vary own imagination. The film is somewhat bad in its storytelling ability, but the filmmaking and creative juices save this otherwise preposterous picture. Henry Selick, the genius behind similar movies like "The Nightmare Before Christmas" and "James and the Giant Peach," once again uses a variety of eye-popping, indulgent gimmickry to provide a delight for the senses. Model puppets, elaborate set designs, computer animation, stop-action photography, claymation, convincing and complex makeup, far out costumes and even some nifty voice effects preside the entertainment of "Monkey Bone." Selick creates a world so full of energy and inventive characters that it justifies the movie's existence.

Brendan Fraser makes another fool of himself as Stu Miley, a modest cartoonist who finally achieves success and does not know what to do with it. His long time girlfriend, Julie (Bridget Fonda), comforts, loves him and is ecstatic when Stu's cartoon primate creation, Monkeybone, a wisecracking and obscene libido portraiture, becomes a national television show. His manager wants to market the franchise big time, but Stu wants his simple life to stay simple with one major change: he wants to marry Julie.

Before he has a chance to propose, a car accident leaves Stu in a coma and his spirit plunged into a weird, subconscious world called Downtown, a waiting place while a person is between life and death. The carnival-like realm inhabits a variety of unusual characters, like Kitty (Rose McGowan from "Jawbreaker") an attractive waitress dressed in a feline furnish, Hypnos (Giancarlo Esposito) the half-man, half-goat ruler of Downtown, Death (Whoopi Goldberg) the cynical head honcho who determines the visitor's fate, and even the concoction of his own imagination-the aggravating nuisance himself: Monkeybone (voiced by John Turturro).

Back on planet earth, Julie struggles to keep Stu's fanatic sister (Megan Mullally) from pulling his plug. Stu conceives a plan to escape Downtown by stealing an exit pass from none other than Death herself. He tries, gets the pass, but Monkeybone betrays his crafty creator and takes it for himself. Now inhabiting the body of Stu, Monkeybone is free to wreak havoc on Stu's lifestyle. While Stu himself possesses the body of a dead gymnast (Chris Kattan from "House on Haunted Hill") to save what is left of his relationship with Julie.

The scenes depicting Stu's nightmare reality are absolutely extraordinary. The artful sets, special effects, costumes, animation, and makeup are some of the most intricate and tasty examples of effective eye-candy. It's like we've entered an imaginative dreamscape of zany and entertaining characters. Everyone involved feels alive and inexhaustible, especially Brendan Fraser in a very effective performance. Monkeybone himself is quite annoying-but in a fun kind of way. The involving and fresh atmosphere make this world a memorable movie experience.

There are several hilarious sequences, one involving a dog's nightmare where several of his feline nemeses secure him and prepare to detach his manhood, and another when a walking organ donor loses his guts during a fight sequence. By now you are probably realizing, despite the cartoon qualities, this movie is not intended for small children. "Monkeybone" contains all sorts of sexual innuendoes, horrific concepts, and suggestive situations. During the screening I attended, a woman instructed her three young children to leave the theater. However, the movie is clearly too goofy and comical for serious, mature audiences-so what is the target audience?

"Monkeybone" provides enough positives to outweigh the negatives. The production is worth a watch to experience some of the dazzling images-but I would not see it again for free.

10 of 18 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 172 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page