Adventures in Babysitting
|Adventures in Babysitting|
Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Chris Columbus|
|Produced by||Debra Hill |
|Written by||David Simkins|
|Starring||Elisabeth Shue |
|Music by||Michael Kamen|
|Editing by||Fredric Steinkamp |
|Studio||Touchstone Pictures |
Silver Screen Partners III
|Distributed by||Buena Vista Pictures Distribution|
|Release date(s)||July 1, 1987|
|Running time||102 min.|
Adventures in Babysitting (also known as A Night on the Town in certain countries) is a 1987 American comedy film written by David Simkins, directed by Chris Columbus, and starring Elisabeth Shue, Maia Brewton, Keith Coogan, Anthony Rapp, Penelope Ann Miller, Bradley Whitford, and a brief cameo by blues singer/guitarist Albert Collins. Although it is set in Oak Park and Chicago, Illinois, with much of the action taking place in the city itself, the movie was filmed primarily in Toronto.
After her boyfriend, Mike Todwell (Bradley Whitford), cancels their anniversary date, 17-year-old Chris Parker (Elisabeth Shue) volunteers to babysit for the Andersons' children, 15-year-old Brad (Keith Coogan) and 8-year-old Sara (Maia Brewton). However, she gets a frantic phone call from her friend Brenda (Penelope Ann Miller), who has run away from home, asking her to come pick her up after running out of money from the cab ride to the bus station. She takes Brad, Sara, and Brad's friend Daryl Coopersmith (Anthony Rapp) and sets out, but they get a flat tire, find the spare compartment empty, and become stranded on the expressway.
A friendly tow truck driver, "Handsome" John Pruitt (John Ford Noonan), offers to replace the tire for free. En route to the garage, he gets a call on his CB saying that his wife is cheating on him and he heads home. A brief shootout ensues and during their scramble to get away, the kids unwittingly climb into a Cadillac just as it is being hotwired by a professional car thief, Joe Gipp (Calvin Levels). Gipp promises to help them get on their way home but not before bringing them to a chop shop, where they are briefly detained. Daryl finds a Playboy magazine and steals it before they escape onto the building's roof; however, it contains incriminating notes and the car thieves follow them. They stumble into a Blues club and are forced to sing about their ordeal by Albert Collins, receiving applause from the audience. Billy Branch plays himself as the harmonica player in this scene. After they have left, the car thieves are held up when they are forced to do the same thing.
The car thieves manage to once again catch up to the kids, but the four narrowly escape by stowing away aboard a Chicago 'L' train. Inside the near-empty train, Chris and the children become suddenly caught in the middle of a gang fight in which Brad is injured and taken to the hospital (Mercy Medical Center). They again encounter Pruitt, who is on the run due to his earlier fight. He tells them that his boss Dawson fixed their car, but he will force them to pay $50 for the tire. They then come across a college fraternity party at which Chris meets a new love interest, Dan Lynch (George Newbern), who manages to gather $45 for them. Daryl almost gets into a fight with a jock whose lonely girlfriend attempts to make out with him. Dan then drives them to Dawson's garage.
In the garage, Dawson (Vincent D'Onofrio) appears, and Sara believes he is the superhero Thor. He refuses to release their car due to the $5 shortage, but she pleads with him and gives him her plastic helmet, causing him to change his mind, and he allows them to take the car. On their way through the city, they pass by the restaurant to where Mike was going to bring Chris on their date, and Daryl spots his car parked out front. She goes in to find him flirting with the sleazy Sesame Plexer. Brad and Daryl stand up to him when he insults her. Meanwhile, Sara wanders off and is spotted by Graydon, one of the car thieves. She is chased to the Smurfit-Stone Building where her parents are attending a party. She goes to the renovated top floor and uses a rope to slip out the window. He discovers her and attempts to climb outside with her as she dangles precariously. Chris, Daryl, and Brad go on to the top floor after seeing her out the window and rescue her.
They successfully pick up Brenda and get home, and Chris sends the kids upstairs while she quickly tidies up the mess left earlier in the day. She settles in just as Mr. and Mrs. Anderson walk in through the door. She goes up to say good night to the kids and they all thank each other for the greatest night of their lives. As she leaves, Dan shows up to return Sara's skate which she had accidentally left behind, but notes that wasn't the only reason, and they share a kiss.
A post-credits scene shows Graydon still leaning against the side of the building, desperately waiting for rescue.
- Elisabeth Shue as Chris Parker
- Maia Brewton as Sara Anderson
- Keith Coogan as Brad Anderson
- Anthony Rapp as Daryl Coopersmith
- Penelope Ann Miller as Brenda
- Bradley Whitford as Mike Todwell
- Calvin Levels as Joe Gipp
- Vincent Phillip D'Onofrio as Dawson
- George Newbern as Dan Lynch, a college student
- John Ford Noonan as "Handsome" John Pruitt
- John Davis Chandler as Bleak
- Ron Canada as Graydon, Bleak's second in command
- Albert Collins as himself; a player in a Chicago Blues club
- Lolita Davidovich as Sue Ann
- Clark Johnson as Black Gang Leader
- Kirsten Kieferle as Sesame Plexer
This was the first PG-13-rated film released by a Disney film division and was released as A Night on the Town in the United Kingdom. In the bus station scene with Brenda, the actor who portrayed the hot dog salesman originally improvised his line as "then I don't have a fucking weiner!" director Chris Columbus loved the line, but executives at Disney wanted to keep the picture more family-friendly, so the line was removed (although the word "fuck" is used twice in the final cut). This scene was added to stretch out the bus station segments. It was not in the original script.
Bradley Whitford, who played Mike Todwell in the film, was actually 27 years old at the time of shooting in 1987. He was uncomfortable with the age difference, but Columbus put him at ease by allowing him to use his own Camaro in the movie. The car is later seen with Whitford's actual license plate "SO COOL."
 Home media
Adventures in Babysitting has been released on VHS, DVD and Blu-ray formats. In the United States, it received a VHS release by Buena Vista Pictures on July 14, 1992. It was released on DVD for the first time on January 18, 2000 by Buena Vista Pictures. A 25th anniversary edition Blu-ray was released August 7, 2012.
Although it may still be referred to as A Night on the Town on television airings in the United Kingdom, it has now been released in its original title. The VHS was released on October 21, 2002 in the United Kingdom by Cinema Club, it received a 15 certificate by the BBFC for strong language and sexual references, it was previously released in an edited PG certificate for family viewing. It was released on DVD in the United Kingdom on May 31, 2004, again uncut like the 15 certificate VHS, it has been reduced to a 12 certificate.
 Critical response
 Box office
The movie was a box office success, earning more than $34 million on its $7 million budget.
 Television pilot
Adventures in Babysitting was adapted into an American television pilot of the same name for CBS in 1989. It starred Jennifer Guthrie (who would later co-star on Parker Lewis Can't Lose with Maia Brewton) as Chris, Joey Lawrence as Brad, Courtney Peldon as Sara, Brian Austin Green as Daryl, and Ariana Mohit as Brenda. It was not picked up to series.
A remake was reportedly planned for release in 2012. Disney Channel star Raven-Symoné was going to star in the remake, currently titled Further Adventures in Babysitting, but decided to withdraw due to other projects. Miley Cyrus, who was rumored to be attached to the project, has also denied involvement.
- Gang Leader: Don't fuck with the Lords of Hell. Chris: Don't fuck with the babysitter.
- Bertinelli, Valerie, Losing It: And Gaining My Life Back One Pound at a Time (2008). Free Press.
- "Adventures in Babysitting [VHS (1987)"]. amazon.com. http://www.amazon.com/dp/6301008944. Retrieved September 22, 2011.
- "Adventures in Babysitting (1987)". http://www.amazon.com/dp/6305428050. Retrieved September 22, 2011.
- "Adventures in Babysitting [VHS"]. amazon.co.uk. http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B00004I9M6. Retrieved September 22, 2011.
- "Adventures In Babysitting". hmv.com. http://hmv.com/hmvweb/simpleMultiSearch.do?searchUID=&pGroupID=-1&adultFlag=false&simpleSearchString=adventures+in+babysitting&primaryID=0. Retrieved September 22, 2011.
- "Adventures in Babysitting at Rottentomatoes". http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Adventures_in_Babysitting. Retrieved June 29, 2011.
- "Weekend Box Office". The Los Angeles Times. July 14, 1987. http://articles.latimes.com/1987-07-14/entertainment/ca-3947_1_opening-weekend. Retrieved December 28, 2010.
- Adventures in Babysitting (1989) (TV)
- "Miley Cyrus to star in 'Adventures in Babysitting' sequel". Sun Times. July 25, 2008. http://www.suntimes.com/entertainment/movies/1314522,adventures-babysitting-sequel-mileycyrus-120408.article.[dead link]
- Carroll, Larry (April 1, 2009). "Miley Cyrus Wants 'Edgy' Roles ...". MTV. Archived from the original on April 5, 2009. http://www.mtv.com/movies/news/articles/1608223/story.jhtml. Retrieved April 1, 2009. "'Hannah Montana' star denies being cast in ... 'Adventures in Babysitting' remake"
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