8 June 2013

Big Fish

Big Fish 2003
  • Director: Tim Burton
  • Based on book  by Daniel Wallace
  • Cast: Ewan McGregor, Albert Finney, Billy Crudup, Helena Bonham Carter, Jessica Lange, Marion Cotillard, Steve Buscemi
  • Personal “oh yeah him/her” reaction, i.e. have seen this actor/actress in:
    • Ewan McGregor – The Ghost Writer, The Island, Star Wars, Moulin Rouge, Young Adam, Little Voice, Velvet Goldmine, A Life Less Ordinary, Brassed Off, Trainspotting, Shallow Grave
    • Albert Finney -  The Bourne Ultimatum, A Good Year, Traffic, Erin Brockovich, Breakfast of Champions, Cold Lazarus, Miller’s Crossing, Tom Jones
    • Billy Crudup   Public Enemies, Almost Famous
    • Helena Bonham Carter – Terminator 4 Salvation, Harry Potter, Sweeney Todd, The King’s Speech, Alice in Wonderland, Frankenstein, Keep the Aspidistra Flying, Howards End, Les Misérables
    • Jessica Lange – Broken Flowers, Titus, A Thousand Acres, Sweet Dreams, Frances, Tootsie, The Postman Always Rings Twice
    • Marion Cotillard – Nine, Inception, La vie en rose, Public Enemies, A Good Year
    • Steve Buscemi – Paris je t’aime, The Sopranos, Romance & Cigarettes, The Island, Twenty-Eight Days, The Big Lebowski, Kansas City, Fargo, Living in Oblivion, Billy Bathgate, Barton Fink, Miller’s Crossing, Pulp Fiction, Reservoir Dogs
  • Why bought: Ewan McGregor, Helena Bonham-Carter, Tim Burton
  • Seen: Twice. First time a couple of years ago. Now: May 26, 2013


It turned out to be a bit of a tearjerker in spite of myself.  It’s a charming movie and Ewan McGregor is a sweetheart. Not exactly believable (and I don’t mean the unlikely adventures) but a lovable sweetheart.
His older self in the form of Albert Finney is harder to take.  I sympathize with son Billy Crudup. Finney would drive me crazy too if he was my blabbery story-telling father.  The lovey-dovieness between Finney and Lange is a bit hard to take too.  Helena Bonham-Carter is surprisingly lay-back in this role; good as always but not as outstanding as usual.
But it’s a fun story with a lot of more or less impossible adventures involving more or less unlikely oddball characters that in the end seem to have actually happened with real life oddball people.
There is a moral here, at least one has the slightly annoying feeling throughout the film that there is – but I’m not sure what it is.  Sons, believe in your fathers? I hope not. Everyone, believe in the unlikely? Better.  Believe in the power of story-telling? Better still. I’ll take that one. But a grip on reality is nice too.


3* of 5


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