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Mac and Me

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Mac and Me
Mac and me movie poster.jpg
How to rip E.T. off by advertising McDonald's.
Genre: Adventure
Directed By: Stewart Raffill
Produced By: Mark Damon
William B. Kerr
R.J. Louis
Written By: Steve Feke
Stewart Raffill
Starring: Christine Ebersole
Jonathan Ward
Tina Caspary
Lauren Stanley
Jade Calegory
Photography: Color
Cinematography: Nick McLean
Distributed By: Orion Pictures
Release Date: August 5, 1988 (Hong Kong)
August 12, 1988 (United States)
Runtime: 99 minutes
Country: United States
Language: English
Budget: $13 million
Box Office: $6.4 million (domestic)
Sequel: Untitled Mac and Me sequel (cancelled)

Mac and Me (aka MAC and Me) is a 1988 American science fiction adventure film co-written (with Steve Feke) and directed by Stewart Raffill about a "Mysterious Alien Creature" (MAC) that escapes from nefarious FBI agents and is befriended by a boy who uses a wheelchair due to a spinal condition. Together, they try to find MAC's family, whom he has been separated from. The film has a cult status over the years and has been called one of the worst films ever made. It was also nominated for Worst Picture at the 9th Golden Raspberry Awards, but it lost to Cocktail.


A young extraterrestrial, separated from its family and stranded on Earth, finds friendship with a boy in a wheelchair.

Why It's Nothing More Than One Giant Ad

  1. First and foremost, the entire film premise is a complete rip-off of E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial, even ripping off the working title for E.T., "E.T. and Me".
  2. Cheap special effects. When Eric falls into the water in one scene, you can obviously tell it's a green screening when MAC pops up from the foreground.
  3. The aliens' costumes look absolutely hideous.
  4. The film is infamous for its huge product placement for McDonald's. There's even a five-minute dance sequence inside a McDonald's restaurant complete with a cameo of Ronald McDonald starring as himself. In fact, the name "MAC" could be a reference to the Mcdonald's signature sandwich, the Big Mac. There's also product placement for Skittles, Coca-Cola, and Sears.
  5. Incredibly wooden acting from the human characters.
  6. Poorly attempted humor, which is nothing but fart jokes and couch gags.
  7. Janet (Eric's mother) is an unlikable character, as she frequently blames Eric for anything bad happening around the house, even though he's wheelchair-bound.
  8. Ridiculous ending, where a stray bullet from the cops hits a petrol pump near a supermarket and somehow causes the whole supermarket to blow up. What's more, this somehow kills Eric despite him being nowhere in the building, leading to MAC and his family bringing him back from the dead, in another story element blatantly ripped off from E.T. (even if they do switch things up a bit by having the young boy as the one who seemingly dies, instead of the alien).
    • The originally-filmed ending was even worse. In that ending, a cop accidentally shot Eric dead, which makes more sense than having him killed by the explosion, but is far more disturbing.
    • The new ending was shot incompetently; Eric's unconscious (dead) body was added as a cutout, which clashes horribly with the film. In addition, Michael's line "He's gone?" is poorly dubbed in over his original line "He's dead?"; if you listen carefully, you can hear both clips of "He's dead" and "He's gone" play at the same time.
  9. Terrible direction by Stewart Raffill.
  10. Not very good pacing.

Redeeming Qualities

  1. The infamous scene of Eric falling off a cliff into a lake is unintentionally hilarious, and has been parodied many times in the years since.
  2. The soundtrack is pretty good, which was composed by Alan Silvestri, even if a lot of it seems to have been copied from Back to the Future (even though it was composed by the same composer.).
  3. Casting someone who was actually disabled in real life (Jade Calegory was born with spina bifida and uses a wheelchair as with his character) in the lead role was something very rarely done in Hollywood films of this era and it also avoided the Inspirationally Disadvantaged trope.
  4. The aforementioned supermarket explosion does admittedly look very spectacular.
  5. It at least holds up better than fellow E.T. ripoff Nukie, and can be so bad, it's good.


Mac and Me was universally panned by critics and audiences alike, partly due to plotlines similar to E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial (1982), as well as its elaborate product placement of McDonald's and Coca-Cola, and flopped at the box office. It gained a 7% on Rotten Tomatoes with a 38% audience score and 3.4/10 on IMDb.

Box office

On a 13 million dollars budget, it made 6.4 million dollars.



  • The Japanese laserdisc of the movie where one of the scenes is shown the police accidentally shot Eric, then Mac and his family saved Eric by removing the bullet and healed him wasn't from the final cut. The video appears below, reviewed by Phelous.
  • As part of a running gag, whenever he's a guest on Late Night with Conan O'Brien and Conan, Paul Rudd would perform a bait-and-switch by routinely showing the same clip of Eric rolling off the cliff and falling into the lake instead of showing clips from the actual films Rudd was ostensibly promoting.
  • There were plans for a sequel because the film ended with a freeze-frame and the words "We'll be back!" superimposed on it, but it was canceled due to the negative reviews and the film being a commercial failure, grossing only $6.4 million.
  • Two of the actors Jade Calegory (who played Eric) and Vinnie Torrente (who played Mitford) have no acting credits after the late 1980s. Although this was their film debuts, they made their last appearances in the movies Alien Nation and Death House respectively.
  • The film was one of the six movies featured in Season 12 (Netflix season 2) of Mystery Science Theater 3000.
  • Jennifer Aniston made her film debut as one of the dancers in the McDonald's dance scene.

External links