We welcome you to Down Town and while you're in your coma, Monkeybone
This cheap and cheerful clown town will be your home sweet home-a!
is a 2001 film directed by Henry Selick
. The film is based upon the graphic novel Dark Town
by Kaja Blackley.
Stu Miley (Brendan Fraser
) is a cartoonist, whose life is looking up. He's recently sold the cartoon "Monkeybone
" to the network, and he's about to propose to the girl he loves. And then, he went into a coma. He wakes up in Down Town, a whimsical dreamlike place between life and death, where nightmares are big business. And guess who's waiting for him? Monkeybone, his Figment. He's stuck in Down Town, waiting, until Death
gives him a ticket out. However, he finds out the plug's about to be pulled on him, so the pair sets out to steal an Exit Pass. However, once they've snatched it from Death, Monkeybone reveals himself as fed up with being just a figment
, and, with help of Hypnos, God of Sleep, uses the pass to become Stu in the real world. Hypnos plans to use Stu's body to distribute nightmare juice- a chemical that causes nightmares in people and animals. Hilarity Ensues
as Death sends Stu to stop Monkeybone, in the body of a deceased Olympian.
This movie provides examples of:
- Amazing Technicolour Population: The Figments and other inhabitants of Down Town.
- Badass Normal: The doctors who refuse to let the zombie organ donor escape with their organs.
- Black Comedy: Used at points throughout.
- Classical Mythology: Death and Hypnos
- Executive Meddling: The film is choppy due to character development scenes being cut to achieve a PG-13 rating.
- Fish out of Water: Monkeybone in Stu's body.
- Grand Theft Me: Monkeybone to Stu, and Stu in a dead gymnast.
- Grievous Harm with a Body: Stu as the Olympian throws internal organs at Stu!Monkeybone.
- Grim Reaper: Separate from Death herself, who is played by Whoopi Goldberg.
- Large Ham: John Turturro and Brendan Fraser as Monkeybone.
- Little Bit Beastly: Miss Kitty, the waitress of Down Town's bar, is a Cat Girl. We last see her killing the rat guard and eating him.
- Mind Screw: The diving into his first drawing, among other things.
- Naked People Are Funny: Herb (played by David Foley) rips off his clothes after sniffing the Oneirix.
- Nightmare Sequence: Many. Oneirix, which is literal Nightmare Fuel, is part of the plot.
- No Celebrities Were Harmed: A Stephen King stand-in (credited as "Man in the Dungeon"), who claims Cujo took the place of the original.
- Our Zombies Are Different: Stu borrows an ex-gymnast's body, played by Chris Kattan.
- Punny Name: S. Miley.
- Rage Against the Author: Monkeybone himself dislikes Stu, and steals his body. Stephen King suffered a similar fate.
- Roger Rabbit Effect: Monkeybone is this, but with stop-motion.
- Shout-Out: Stu is wearing a Nightmare Before Christmas wrist watch.
- Show Within a Show: the cartoon "Monkeybone" which Stu makes.
- Spiritual Successor: Towards Cool World, as both movies had a plot where the creator's creation turns against them (Monkeybone and Holli Would).
- There Are No Therapists: Averted, as therapy helps Stu to become a successful artist.
- Toilet Humour: The Monkeybone dolls that Stu tries to sell have Monkeybone farting out yellow smoke which turns out to be the Oneirix that Monkeybone uses to give people nightmares.
- What Do You Mean, It Wasn't Made on Drugs?: Stu nearly dies, leaving his body open to use to another soul — a chance pounced upon by his eponymous creation (which, in his head, is the embodiment of his libido). While Monkeybone wreaks surreal havoc in this world, his creator has to barter with Dream and Death in the hereafter.