The film opens with a group of people in a movie screening room, The lights go down and we see a short animated cartoon. The scene in the cartoon is a grade school room and one of the students is infatuated with his teachers flabby arms. He gets so aroused that he gets an erection. The students laugh as he tries to cover up but up through the covers pops - MONKEYBONE. The lights come up and the audience is in hysterics, this Monkeybone is sure to be a big hit.
Brendan Fraser is the cartoonist and his strip name is MONKEYBONE. His girlfriend is Bridget Fonda and she is a sleep disorder specialist. In fact, it was because of Bridget that Monkeybone was created. Brendan had come to her because of the incredible nightmares he was having. To describe the dreams he would draw for her what he saw. What he had drawn was hideous. When she told him to draw the same figure with hs other hand - the cute and lovable Monkeybone was created. Back at the screening room, Brendans manager wants to talk about all the upcoming Monkeybone toys and other merchandise. Brendan thinks its just awful and just wants to leave so he can propose to Bridget.
He gets to his car but it is now filled with Monkeybone paraphernalia. When pushing it away he accidentally inflates a large Monkeybone blowup, causing him to drive the car into a wall, sending Brendan into a coma.
While in the coma, he experiences himself going to a place called downtown which is populated by creatures form his nightmares and other humans who are also in a coma.
He has to wait in downtown until he either dies or if he recovers, he receives a golden pass out of downtown.
Meanwhile, back in the real world, Brendans sister tells the doctor that they did not want life support but she finally agrees to wait 3 months before pulling the plug. the three months pass quickly and on the day he is to be terminated, Bridget gives him an injection that will increase his nightmares and hopefully, snap him out of the coma.
Back in downtown, Monkeybone and Brendan decide to go to meet Death (Whoopie Goldberg) and steal the golden pass. Theyre successful but Monkeybone knocks out Brendan, takes the pass and goes back to earth, taking over Brendans body. He comes to, just seconds before being disconnected.
In downtown, Fraser is put into a cell, along with people like Edgar Allen Poe and Stephan King. It turns out that there is a plot by the inhabitants of downtown. They want more nightmares and so they take people that have created characters and then they exchange the characters for the real person. Monkeybone became Brendan, the raven became Poe and Cujo became King.
Monkeybone is going to try to get the nightmare inducing drug from Bridget. He succeeds and has the drug put in a Monkeybone doll that farts.
The dolls are in a large piñata that will be broken at a party in a large museum. Brendan escapes from prison with the help of a catwoman and convinces death to send him back to earth.
He wakes up in the body of a gymnast (SNLs Chris Kattan) that has died with a broken neck and is in the middle of having his organs taken out for donation.
Fraser jumps off the table, puts strapping tape around his cut open body, and places a wooden brace on his neck. He dashes off to the museum to stop Monkeybone.
When he gets there, Monkeybone (as Fraser) is about to have the piñata broken and Fraser (as the gymnast) tries to stop him. He is unsuccessful but does manage to convince Bridget that he is really Fraser in a different body.
Monkeybone runs off and Brendan chases him to the top of the building where there is a large helium balloon of Monkeybone. Monkeybone gets on it, Brendan also grabs a rope and they drift off across the grounds (with body parts falling from the gymnasts body).
Finally a policeman arrives and shoots the balloon causing it to come plummeting down, killing both Brendan and Monkeybone.
They both wake up back in downtown. Death is there to greet them. She combines Monkeybone and Brendan into one person and sends him back to earth. The park area around the museum has now cleared out except for Bridget. Brendan walks up to her and they embrace. He is now a better person because without Monkeybone, he was too timid and just sort of plain. With Monkeybone, he has a stronger, more well rounded personality
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