Honey, I Shrunk the Kids

A charming and amiable Disney live-action feature (1989), directed by first-timer Joe Johnston, about an inventor (Rick Moranis) who devises a gizmo that accidentally shrinks his kids and two of their friends (Amy O'Neill, Robert Oliveri, Jared Rushton, and Thomas Brown) to quarter-inch height. The special effects are uneven, but the poetics of the basic idea really pay off: a suburban backyard is transformed into an endless jungle packed with adventures, including rides on a bumblebee and a friendly baby ant and menacing attacks from a hose and a lawn mower. The setting and at least one character—Matt Frewer, best known as TV's Max Headroom—recall Joe Dante's The 'Burbs. PG, 93 min.

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