Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Movies of the Past: Big Fish

When I first saw this movie in the cinema, I was a mildly bored teenager who, though enjoyed the movie, didn't find it very memorable. Several years later, after hearing a lot of great stuff and realising it was from one of my favourite directors Tim Burton, I decided to grab it and give it another watch. I am definitely happy that I did so. I got so much more out of it when I watched it a second time. I'm not saying every teenager will be bored when they watch it, though. Probably the opposite. I'm the first to admit that my taste in movies at a young age wasn't exactly the best, but even at that stage I was able to look back and see the good in the movie.

The movie revolves around the stories that father, Ed Bloom (played by Albert Finney as an old man) told his son, Will Bloom as a child,(who as an adult is played by Billy Crudup) who has now grown up and looks on those stories not as nice exaggerated tales, but as lies that he was once foolish enough to believe. Throughout the movie, you are shown various stories from Ed Bloom's (played by Ewan McGregor throughout his adult years) life, where he meets lots of colourful characters and affects their lives. And you also have the side of the story Will Bloom dealing with a tattered relationship with his father. The story is nice and sweet, with lots of touching moments. I'll avoid much more about the plot, so I don't take anything away from the joy of watching it for yourself. I will just say it's a great plot, and I loved watching all these far-fetched stories come to life.

The characters and acting in the movie are great, because of all the depth and well.....character they have. The character of Ed Bloom (in the stories) was very well written, and very likable. Ewan McGregor plays him perfectly. Will Bloom, wasn't exactly the most likable character in some ways, but the aspects of his personality were important to the overall plot. He was played well by Billy Crudup. The supporting cast was really great, with very interesting characters played by actors like Danny DeVito, Helena Bonham Carter, Steve Buscemi and the late Matthew McGrory. Considering the large cast of characters in the movie, they were all handled very well considering their stories were all being told in one movie. That is another positive point of the movie.

Visually, this movie is fairly different from most of Tim Burton's movies. It lacks the Gothic theme that almost all of his films have. It was a bit of a change for him, but he handled it really well, and I look forward to seeing him take on some more movies in a similar style. This movie has become one of my favourites and is definitely in my top five Burton films. People of a really young age may not enjoy the movie much, but I wouldn't recommend it for anyone under the age of about ten anyway, since some of the scenes may be a little mature for them. My advice would be that if you haven't already seen this movie, it should be near the top of you "Films to Watch" list.

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