Big Fish

MPAA Rated – PG-13
It’s 1:50 Long
A Review by:
The Dude on the Right

Big Fish
Movie Stats & Links
Starring: Ewan McGregor, Albert Finney, Billy Crudup, Jessica Lange, Alison Lohman, Helena Bonham Carter, Robert Guillaume, Matthew McGrory, Steve Buscemi, Danny DeVito
MPAA Rated: PG-13
Released By: Columbia Pictures.
Release Date: 2003
Kiddie Movie: The stories are cute, but they might start to get bored.
Date Movie: It’s alright for the both of you.
Gratuitous Sex: There is a butt shot you really probably don’t want to see.
Gratuitous Violence: Not really.
Action: Ehh.
Laughs: Some.
Memorable Scene: The twins are fun to watch.
Memorable Quote: Nothing stands out.
Directed By: Tim Burton

Maybe it was just that I couldn’t get wrapped up in the characters, but there was a point during “Big Fish” where, sure, the stories being told seemed mostly unbelievable yet entertaining, but I just didn’t care anymore. I guess I’ll try to explain this a little better in my review. Let’s go…
“Big Fish” gives us Will Bloom (Billy Crudup). His father, Ed (the older played by Albert Finney, the younger by Obi-Wan Kenobi, oops, I mean Ewan McGregor) has been telling these seemingly tall tales about his lives adventures to anyone who would listen, and Will is finally sick of it, especially when Ed makes himself the center of attention at Will’s wedding by retelling the tale of how Ed was fishing when Will was born. The story is more involved than that, but Will is sick of it because, well, Will knows it isn’t true, that Ed, being a traveling salesman, was just out of town when he was born. It is with this knowledge, knowing that Ed’s most famous story is false, that Will assumes every other tale his father has told him is a lie also. Now that Ed is dying, Will just wants to find out how his Dad really lived his life.

And so “Big Fish” switches from scenes with Will in the present coupled with flashbacks detailing the stories his father has told throughout the years. A couple of the stories go as follow: One involves how this giant named Karl (Matthew McGrory) came to town one day and started eating sheep and livestock. Ed goes to confront the giant, to convince him to leave town, and they become friends and leave together. Along the way they split up for a spell leaving Ed to discover this seemingly fictional town that has you wondering if Ed had an untimely demise, that this place could be heaven, and that as Ed leaves the town, he comes back to life because it wasn’t yet his time to visit there. So Ed hooks back up with Karl, and the both of them end up at the circus. Karl gets hired by Amos Calloway (Danny DeVito), the ringleader at the circus who also might be a werewolf, and Ed goes off to find the love of his life, Sandra (the elder played by Jessica Lange, the younger by Alison Lohman). Okay, I think you get the point that Ed’s stories seem far-fetched, and if that doesn’t make you think so, there’s also the story of Ed parachuting into China to steal some plans to the power-plant only to find conjoined at the hip twins, Ping and Jing, with two bodies and only two legs, so he gets their help to escape China and helps them join the circus with Karl and Amos. You can see how Will has trouble believing his dad’s stories of his life.

And so the story goes on, eventually Ed ends up on his deathbed in the hospital, when Dr. Bennett (Robert Guillaume) puts things into perspective for Will.

Yes, it is a touching story about a son trying to connect with his father, and it has the wackiness and attention to detail that you would expect with Tim Burton directing, but about halfway through the movie, I just didn’t care about the stories that the young Ed was telling. I guess I’ll just leave the review there giving it 2 ½ stars out of 5. If you’re looking for a quirky matinee, go ahead and see “Big Fish.”

That’s it for this one! I’m The Dude on the Right!! L8R!!!