46 user 13 critic

Thunderpants (2002)

PG | | Comedy, Family, Sci-Fi | 24 May 2002 (UK)
An 11-year-old boy's amazing ability to break wind leads him first to fame and then to death row, before it helps him to fulfill his ambition of becoming an astronaut.


(as Pete Hewitt)


(story) (as Pete Hewitt),
1 win. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
Sir John Osgood
Sir Anthony Silk
Miss Rapier
Bruce Cook ...
Mrs. Smash
Mr. Smash
John Higgins ...
Lillie Crossley ...
Denise, age 5
Sam Davies ...
Patrick, age 3


Patrick Smash (11) was born with two stomachs, and hence the uncontrollable 'talent' to produce ungodly farts. This soon drives his own dad away and makes his social life hell. His only friend is classmate Alan A. Allen, a prodigy genius, who has no sense of smell. Even Alan's invention Thunderpants, which renders Patrick's farts harmless, can't make his space travel dream realistic. However after the invention of an adaptation which turns it into flying fuel, Alan is recruited by the US space center. Patrick becomes word class tenor Sir John Osgood's secret high C farter. Their reunion is even more incredible. Written by KGF Vissers

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Comedy | Family | Sci-Fi

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for ongoing crude humor, language, some violence and bullying | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






Release Date:

24 May 2002 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Plein gaz  »


Box Office


$7,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

£430,913 (United Kingdom), 26 May 2002, Limited Release
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:


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Did You Know?


Every car on Patrick's housing estate appears to be a green Mini Minor. See more »


Placido P. Placeedo: You are singing the high bit... with your arse?
See more »


Spoofs The Right Stuff (1983) See more »


Also Sprach Zarathustra
Written by Richard Strauss
See more »

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User Reviews

Has its moments but it is hard to get past the constant childish and puerile aspects that overwhelm it
19 April 2005 | by See all my reviews

Born with two stomachs, Patrick Smash is a normal boy in that he constantly farts; however for Patrick it is different as he doesn't do it for laughs – he actually cannot stop. His father cannot cope and leaves, his mother turns to drink and his only friend at school is a ginger "genius" boy whose nerdy ways make him equally a target for bullies. Patrick has one dream – to become an astronaut but he knows that to do this he must solve his problems and discover the gift that will make him a unique member of any team. With Alan's help he gets a pair of trousers which contain his gases and make him "normal". When Alan goes away in mysterious circumstances, Patrick thinks he will never get the other half of his goal – to discover his gift, but then a series of chance events sees him starting the most important journey of his life.

I don't really feel like I have any reason to complain because, at the end of the day, I sat down to watch a children's film called Thunderpants in full knowledge that the plot was pretty much about a young boy with uncontrollable flatulence. Regardless of this I sat to watch it and found a film that had some things going for it but was overwhelmed by a film that revels in the silliness of the affair in a rather childish manner. I suppose that this will draw giggles from an audience of young children but then this still leaves adults with nothing to do. At least in some kids films the product is good enough to at least distract adults but here they will struggle to get over the fact that, unless you like fart jokes then there won't be much else for you. That said I did actually laugh a few times and it did have at least one aspect that kept me engaged – the cast.

This is not to say that they were any good but more that I was constantly taken by surprise by how many big names seem to have thought this material fit of adding their weight to. Cook is fairly bland, although with such a poor character this is no real surprise; his flat and unfunny voice-over is an irritation though. Grint is pretty simplistic as well, with no real imagination in his "genius" character. The film features a bewildering number of well-known faces in small roles and I really did wonder what made them feel that this film was worth supporting with their presence. Callow is pretty poor; Fry is amusing in his usual upperclass, rather clipped fashion; Beatty seems to be at least entering into the spirit of things but Giamatti just seems to be getting through the film rather than getting into it. However even he looks like he has made a good choice when compared to the presence of the great Leslie Phillips, who has nothing to do at all to do.

Overall this is a poor film but it is not as awful as some would have you believe. The fart jokes will amuse kids although it is likely that, at the age to find it funny, they will then get bored when the "plot proper" kicks in. Adults will find it all too childish and silly but will perhaps get some laughs here and there and will at least be bemused (if not actually entertained) by the presence of so many famous faces for no discernible reason. The ultimate message of overcoming etc is a bit smug and obvious and you do have to wonder whether parents will really want their kids to watch a film that encourages farting as an admirable quality.

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