To celebrate the one day a year when you can get away with just about anything, we run down the greatest movie pranks of all time. Here’s a look at a pint-sized Lindsay Lohan’s sister switch in The Parent Trap, Flounder’s trip to Dean Wormer’s office in Animal House, and more of Hollywood’s best dirty tricks.
Bullies sure were pretty sick in the ’70s. In perhaps the most memorable movie prank of all time, the tormented and telekinetic titular teenager (played by Sissy Spacek) gets drenched in pig’s blood, at the prom no less, in the 1976 rendition of Stephen King’s Carrie. Humiliated, the newly crowned prom queen goes into a psychopathic frenzy and uses her unearthly mind powers to torture students, leaving her high school in a tornado of flames. MGM has announced it will remake the classic horror film and cast Dark Shadows’ Chloe Mortez as its Carrie.
Dumb & Dumber
What prank list is complete without Jim Carrey and bathroom humor? In this scene from Dumb & Dumber, Lloyd tricks Harry by adding laxatives to his tea to sabotage a date. We don’t need to talk about what happens next.
Jackass 1, 2, 2.5, 3-D and 3.5
If you have a strong stomach and a filthy sense of humor, you’ve probably seen all five Jackass installments. Chock full of trick after disgusting trick, the films have no plot—but pack in plenty of cringe-worthy stunts. Some of the most memorable: A game of tetherball being played with a beehive; removing chest hair with super glue; and a tooth being pulled out with a Lamborghini. Not to mention Steve-O being catapulted into the air while inside a (used) portable toilet. Yum.
One of the oldest pranks known to man, the flaming bag of you-know-what left on someone’s doorstep is captured in this scene from Billy Madison. “He’s gonna shit once he realizes it’s shit,” says Adam Sandler’s character before placing the strategically filled bag on Old Man Clemens’s doorstep for the 100th time. You know the rest.
The Parent Trap (1998)
Back when Lindsay Lohan was adorable (yes, there was a time), she was cast in the dual role of twins Annie and Hallie—sisters separated at birth who reconnect and pull the ultimate prank: switching lives. Filled with cutesy scenes of poker games, fencing victories, and the inevitable at-home ear-piercing, this updated version of the 1961 classic boasts prank after prank. This scene shows an unsuspecting soon-to-be mother-in-law getting punk’d by the twins on a camping trip. As she drifts off to sleep, Lohan 1 and 2 drag her inflatable mattress into the middle of a nearby lake.
Never Been Kissed
Reporter Josie Geller goes undercover as a high-school student and painfully relives her own time as “Josie Grossie”—the unpopular and scarred-for-life teen. Joining the ranks of the cool kids the second time around, Geller (played by Drew Barrymore falls for her lit professor in a seemingly inappropriate way. And like any true romcom of the ’90s, her identity must be revealed, of course. Just as she’s being crowned prom queen in front of her “classmates”...
The Breakfast Club
Although the scene is never shown, popular jock Andrew (Emilio Estevez) has a good reason to be part of The Breakfast Club: he taped a fellow student’s butt cheeks together, and “when they pulled the tape off, most of his hair came off, and some skin, too.” Aside from this incident, The Breakfast Club focuses on the practical jokes of John Bender (Judd Nelson), the class screw-up. Mostly aimed at irritating the cold-hearted principal keeping them in weekend detention, Bender’s antics are as unpredictable as they are enjoyable to watch.
Porky’s is one of those ’80s movies (think Blue Lagoon, Sixteen Candles) that didn’t seem to realize how risqué it was to show a few dozen full-frontal teen boys streaking. In case that wasn’t enough, the rude gang takes things up a notch when they find peepholes into the girls’ showers at school and one eager student discovers another use for the hole in the wall. While this might have been considered funny in the ’80s, these boys probably wouldn’t fare too well by today’s standards.
To gain access to a motorcycle club, a clever teen performs one of cinema’s greatest pranks, transforming a police car into a pile of scrap metal. He starts by tying a cable onto the rear axle of the car, fastening the other end to a post. When the cop takes off, the two wheels are inevitably yanked off, resulting in screeching metal and chuckling pranksters.
Best house-party movie ever. A few years after Vito Corleone sent an equine message that a studio boss couldn’t refuse in The Godfather, Animal House came along with a careless prank that once again didn’t end well for a horse. As part of his pledge week, Delta Tau Chi legacy Flounder (Stephen Furst) attempts to pull a prank on the university dean by putting a live horse in his office to find. One thing leads to another and before you know it, RIP Trooper Baby.
Any Macaulay Culkin Movie
With the Home Alone canon, Macaulay Culkin was typecast as a prankster from a young age. As the mischievous Kevin McCallister, he took on two thugs twice his size, but with only half his wits between them. In a (slightly) more mature role, Culkin played opposite Ted Danson in 1994’s Getting Even With Dad. When he finds out his father is a bank robber, our young sociopathic protagonist takes it upon himself to make things right. Stealing his father’s stolen loot in an attempt to get more father-and-son time, he leads dad and other ex-cons through a minefield of practical jokes.