Thunderpants is a 2002 British-German-American family comedy film about a boy whose incredible capacity for flatulence gets him a job as an astronaut. The film was directed by Pete Hewitt, whose previous work included Bill & Ted’s Bogus Journey (1991) and The Borrowers (1997). The script was written by Phil Hughes, based on a story by Peter Hewitt about a boy who dreams of being a spaceman, but has a problem with flatulence.
Born with two stomachs, Patrick Smash (Bruce Cook) is uncontrollably and devastatingly flatulent. No more than thirty seconds after his birth, he first breaks wind, horrifying his parents (Bronagh Gallagher, and Victor McGuire) and doctor (Robert Hardy). As he grows up, Patrick’s farts become so uncontrollable and destructive that his father has to flee their home, as he is often injured by his son’s gaseous emissions, whose force is so strong that it can blow people over. Patrick is bullied at school as a result of his condition, but eventually finds strength in his disorder, ultimately gaining revenge on the school bully Damon (Joshua Herdman) by passing gas in his face, leaving him scarred for life. Patrick’s only friend is child prodigy Alan A. Allen (Rupert Grint), who has anosmia, and, therefore, lacks the ability to smell. Alan and Patrick team up to make Thunderpants, reinforced short trousers strong enough to contain Patrick’s emissions. Eventually, Patrick learns that Alan went to the US to assist astronauts who are trapped in outer space, and Patrick finds that his condition may be of use to the spacemen in peril