The Money Pit (DVD, 2003) Reviews

The Money Pit (DVD, 2003)

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Tom Hanks and Shelley Long Face a Remodeling Disaster in The Money Pit

Apr 8, 2008 (Updated Oct 8, 2008)
Review by  
Rated a Very Helpful Review

Pros:Funny, entertaining movie with good cast.

Cons:Could be too silly in spots for some.

The Bottom Line: The Money Pit was a very entertaining movie that is worth watching. Fans of Hanks and Long may enjoy it.


Owning a home is a dream for many people. That dream can turn into a nightmare if the owners decide to take on remodeling projects that just seem to keep leading to more things that have to be done. The Money Pit, a very funny movie starting Tom Hanks and Shelley Long, illustrates how owing a home can become a huge nightmare.

Anna and Walter were living together in her ex-husband's apartment. Max was coming back earlier than expected and Anna and Walter needed to find a new place to live in a hurry. They were told about a home that was listed well below value. After meeting Estelle and seeing the house, they decided to buy it, thinking it was a great deal. Right after they moved in, they discovered why the price was so low as everything started to go wrong. There were issues with the plumbing and electric as well as the staircase collapsing under Walter and the bathtub falling through the floor. They hired people to fix things and the work just kept dragging on and on. The stress connected to living in the house while trying to fix everything strained Anna and Walter’s relationship. It didn’t help that Max was very determined to get Anna back.

I thought that the idea for the plot of The Money Pit was very original when I first saw the movie. I was fairly young when I saw it and had no idea that it shared much in common with Mr. Blandings Builds His Dream House, a movie made in 1948. I still haven’t seen that movie, but from what I have read about it, the movies share several elements. In 2007, another version of the story was done with Are We Done Yet?. I didn’t like that version as well.

I have lived through more than one remodeling project over the years. Frequently one thing leads to another and what was intended to be a small project can quickly spiral out of control into a much larger project that seems to never end. That aspect of The Money Pit was very realistic and believable even though certain things were exaggerated a bit. I have seen firsthand how unexpected things can happen all at once, so those things don’t seem as exaggerated to me now as they did back when I first saw the movie. I can relate to how aggravating it can be to live in a house that you are remodeling now that I’ve done it.

I thought that The Money Pit was a very funny movie. Most of the humor came from everything that happened once Anna and Walter moved into the house and started the remodeling. It did seem like Walter ended up in more humorous situations because of mishaps with the house. Anna also ended up in some funny situations. I just didn’t think she had as many as Walter did. The house was practically falling apart around their ears, and I couldn’t help but laugh as more and more would go wrong. How can you not laugh when a malfunction with the oven sends a turkey flying through the house before it lands in the bathroom? Certain things that were done to add humor were on the silly side which may bother some people even though the silliness worked for the movie.

Walter and Anna had been living together for a while when the movie began. I’m not sure how long they had been together, but it was clear they were in a committed relationship. They had a good relationship that became strained during the remodeling. Their relationship was strained even more by Max returning since he wanted Anna back and was rather aggressive in trying to achieve that goal. There were a few very brief sexual discussions and situations without any actual sex scenes even though it was made clear that sex was a part of Anna and Walter’s relationship. There wasn’t any nudity and there really wasn’t anything offensive in the movie since it was rated PG.

Walter was a lawyer in a very bad financial position because his father had embezzled money and left the country, leaving Walter to clean up the mess. It really wasn’t the best time for him to buy a house, but he did because they needed somewhere else to live and it seemed like a great deal for the house. Walter had to deal with a lot and he managed to stay mostly calm. I did like Tom Hanks in the part. This was one of his earlier movies before he became really popular.

Anna played the violin in a symphony. Her ex-husband Max was a successful, rich, conductor. Anna also jumped at the chance to buy the house. She wasn’t always the most understanding but was a nice enough character overall. Her relationship with Walter did seem believable. Shelley Long was fine in the part. Max was very arrogant and looked down on Walter. He wasn’t a nice guy and I didn’t like him. He was only in a few scenes so he didn’t have much to do. Alexander Godunov also had a small part in Die Hard. Several different workers and contractors were shown throughout the movie without any of them really standing out. Walter’s dad as well as Estelle, the woman they bought the house from, were very briefly shown.

Main Cast

Alexander Godunov - Max
Tom Hanks - Walter
Shelley Long - Anna
Maureen Stapleton - Estelle

Richard Benjamin - Director

I first saw The Money Pit on VHS many years ago. Since then, I have seen it again on television every so often. Depending on what channel it is on, a few things might be edited out. The movie is available on DVD. I have it as part of a Tom Hanks three movie set that includes three of his earlier comedy movies. That version of the movie includes a documentary on the making of the movie that I haven’t watched yet. I’m not sure if there are other DVD versions available or not.

I still really enjoy The Money Pit when I watch it. The movie was a bit silly at times, but it was very funny and entertaining. It has stood up well and is worth watching, especially for fans of Tom Hanks.

Tom Hanks Movie Reviews
The 'Burbs ~ Charlie Wilson's War ~ The Da Vinci Code ~ The Polar Express ~ The Terminal ~ Toy Story ~ Toy Story 2 ~ You've Got Mail ~


Recommend this product? Yes

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