Big Fish
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Customer Reviews:

  • If it's not, it ought to be!
    A Cult film, that is. A wonderfully non-conventional bit of story-telling that should be thoroughly enjoyed! Why settle for a "just-the-facts-ma'am" kind of life when you can add so much more to the story in the telling. Edward Bloom (Ewan McGregor/Albert Finney) becomes the quintessential opposite of Charles Dicken's Josiah Bounderby of "Hard Times." In "Big Fish" the facts, like gold, are where you find them, and Edward Blooms endless stream of "fish stories" may have more facts than his son, William (Billy Crudup) is willing to credit them for. So William, tired of dad's "fish stories," goes on a fact-finding mission to learn where his father's reality ends and where truth begins. What the son learns changes everything for him, maybe you too. Worth more than one viewing, so it's worth owning!...more info
  • BIG FISH
    BIG FISH is a wonderful family movie. My grandchildren want to see it every time they come over. Wonderful acting and story! Get it and enjoy!...more info
  • Wonderful film, but the transfer is sub-par
    This is one of my family's favorite movies and I was thrilled to see that it was available on blu-ray. I eagerly popped it into my PS3 last night expecting a visual treat, but was sorely disappointed by the "less than blu-ray" quality of the image. I'm convinced that this is an upsampling of the DVD. There's a lack of clarity in the details throughout the film. If you played the blu-ray and DVD versions side by side, I doubt you would see any difference between them....more info
  • A Great Movie that will make you see the magic and the bright side of life
    This movie is really inspiring and makes you realize that your life will only be as interesting and fulfilling as you want to. It may not be a fast paced film, but if you are in the mood for some eye candy scenery and a comforting, fun, and touching film you will not be disappointed. It is definitely a movie that you have to watch at least once in your life time. ...more info
  • Great Movie, Not Bluray Quality Though
    This story is very good, what else would you expect from a Burton/Elfman combo? It's a great mixture of fantasy with reality and will be a movie you want to watch over and over again!

    My only disappointment was the picture quality--I know that it was re-done into bluray so it wouldn't be as good as newer movie releases, but I was expecting at least a better picture than the VHS we have of this.

    ****Contains Some Spoilers****

    This movie is about a man, Ed Bloom, who told stories all his life OF his life. Now he's old and dying and his only son, Will (who is recently married and expecting a child of his own), has come to see him after years of not speaking. As Will grew older he began to see the "lies" or embellishments of his fathers stories and only wanted the straight-up truth--which is something Ed just wasn't capable of. Will since dismissed everything his father ever told him about himself and went on to live his very practical and clean-cut life. It is not until his father's funeral, when he meets all the characters from his father's life stories, that Will sees his father really was telling the truth about his life and only added a little imagination and fantasy to his stories....more info
  • Good movie, bad transfer
    I read a review on another website that the picture quality on this disc was top notch. Aside from this being a great movie, the picture quality on my set didn't look much better than an upconverted SD DVD. If you're expecting really good PQ be cautious before buying....more info
  • Big Fish
    Do NOT buy this product if you have a Dual LG player. It will not play. I have purchased two copies of this title, and NEITHER of them will play on this player. All my other Blu-ray titles play fine, however. Very disappointed....more info
  • Big Fish
    This is a must for many reasons. It's has one of the BEST endings of all...more info
  • Magical!
    Big Fish is an utterly exceptional movie. The cast and director could not have done better. Recommended to absolutely anyone and everyone....more info
  • What is Truth?
    I liked this movie a lot. True to the book, but smartly changed when it served the visual medium of film. One bit in the book I was hoping Tim Burton would discuss why he didn't take was the thing that really kept people in Spector, the imaginary town. In the book, there's a fierce dog that bites people's fingers off if they try to leave. Very Burton-esque. Couldn't figure out why in the film it was about the shoes.

    However, I loved the relationship between Edward and Sandra Bloom - both as young people and as older folks. The simplicity of their love and complete acceptance of the other was touching. I thought William struck exactly the right tone, trying to come to terms with his father before the latter's death. All in all, the movie was an interesting juxtaposition of 'real life' and fantasy....more info
  • Fact is fiction, and fiction is fact; but how the story is told is what's important
    I did enjoy this movie quite a bit, and the tall tale sequences made me chuckle more than I normally would while watching a movie. However, when I read the reviews which absolutely slaughter this film, I am inclined to agree with the criticisms. As it approaches its climax, it too often slides into maudlin sentimentality. It also leaves much to be desired when exploring the relationships of sons & fathers. It is probably best not to try and seek deeper truths from this movie.

    Nonetheless, it is quite entertaining, by and large. As Edward Bloom understood, the deeper truths of a story really pale in comparison with how good of a story it is in the first place. For this reviewer at least, a really good story about a bunch of really good stories is justification for liking it. My four-star rating comes with the qualification that at times, it promises to deliver more than it really can, and tries to be more than it really is, and stumbles as a result. When it did become a bad thing to be a really good yarn? Sometimes that really is enough....more info
  • One of the most Creative Films in Years...
    If you see this film for no other reason, watch it for the dazzling cinematography. You can't help but be swept up into this magical world and wondering how such a fantasy could possibly be real. If you enjoyed The Princess Bride, Secondhand Lions, The Wizard of Oz, and Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory you are sure to enjoy Big Fish. ...more info
  • Wonderful Message, a "definite recommend"
    Great movie. Great message. This is one of those movies that I enjoy watching again and again....more info
  • Sometimes Fiction is Better than the Truth
    Tim Burton's return to genuine film making is a welcome endeavor indeed. Here he creates a film that reminds me of what great film making is all about: fantasy, love and reflecting on the human spirit. I scoffed at a review that compared Big Fish to The Wizard of Oz when Big Fish first came out, but upon viewing it the comparison is really not hyperbolic at all and is actually quite justified. There is a unique carelessness and an innocence that resides perfectly and constantly in both films. To me, both films are truly a breath of fresh air and hope.

    Big Fish is a book written by Daniel Wallace and is the delightful story of Edward Bloom, who has reached the twilight of his life and surrounds himself with his son, daughter-in-law and his wonderful wife Sandra. Eddie has seemingly lived a fantastic life of lies and exaggerations and his son has grown to call his bluff on more than one occasion. In fact, his son returns not just to possibly say good-bye to his father, but to attempt to get him to spill the beans on the truth of who his old man really is. Eddie of course, stands by his stories and brushes off his son's accusations nonchalantly. Most of the film we see Eddie revisit his life as a whole, seen through only his own stories. How he once befriended a 12 foot man; how he arrived in a town that was paradise, once to early and once too late when he turned it back into paradise again; how he joined the circus for three years so he could find out pieces information once a month from Amos the ringmaster about the girl Eddie was sure would be his wife and how Sandra would believe Eddie to be dead in war but he would return. The stories are full of details that would clearly indicate they are false but sometimes they are just better that way. Eddie is a mythological figure and that is just fine with him and as a viewer it's fine with me as well.

    Eddie is played by Albert Finney who is in turn mirrored by Eddie's youthful version, the outstanding Ewen MacGregor who once again proves his versatility. Jessica Lange plays the older Sandra and she is played as a youngster by the talented Alison Lohman who carries as much energy and beauty as you could expect for a role with so little dialogue and so much importance. She is a real find and makes you fall in love with her right along with Eddie. Helena Bonham Carter brings her talents to the roles of The Witch and Jenny (or all of the other important women in Eddie's life). Steve Buscemi shows up, which is always a pleasant surprise and of course Amos is played by Danny DeVito who is as enjoyable as ever. The flat Keanu Reeves clone Billy Crudup is perhaps the only drawback, but he is a safe casting call as Eddie's son and does what he can in discovering that his father is exactly what he says he is and more.

    Let me just add that I believe Big Fish is a family film. I don't see why it shouldn't be rated PG rather than PG-13. The language rises above the prime time television level once, there is blood only in a comedic and romantic fight sequence that has a truly admirable message and there is a women's nude rear displayed briefly and non-sexually. This is not grounds for a PG-13 movie. I would bring a seven year old to see this. In fact, my guess is that the movie was directed at this demographic. When content is not exploitative, it is not really inappropriate. I can't see why Rock Diesel films get PG-13ed when the message is nothing short of "Kill the bad guys, make a lame joke, drive and crash really cool vehicles and get the dirty chick". Anyway, Big Fish may be about a guy who is stretching the truth but the characters' hearts couldn't be more firmly in the right place. The scene when Eddie fills an entire field with Sandra's favorite flower and stands in the middle of the field, outside of her window and calls out to her comes to mind. It brings joy to my heart in a way that only a film like The Wizard of Oz can, and a small child should never ever miss that kind of message. Big Fish is a smart film that really generates a ton of emotion and convincing special effects. I don't doubt for a moment that more work went into the effects than money. This film carried a sense of hope, pride, real love, respect, fantasy and the crucial element that films of these tainted times often forget: natural and unforced optimism.

    Then there is Tim Burton. He is the filmmaker that can put all of these elements together and for the first time tug at your emotions as well. Two things make this film better than Burton's other work. Firstly, it is real and doesn't dwell on being over-stylized and under-dramatized. Secondly, it is pure, clean and full of moments we can all relate too. Tim Burton has made a film that will alienate his older fans who haven't matured like he has, without "selling out" (he's done that before) and he has made a film that the whole world can watch, enjoy and discover this unique filmmaker. I'm glad that he saved some of his real film making inspiration for this wonderful little story. ...more info
  • Nice
    Big Fish is a moving and subversively profound film.
    Those who approach it with specific expectations may well find it "boring", "useless", or "stupid".
    Others willing to just go with the experience can enjoy the marvelous story telling and affection Tim Burton manages to create.
    A treasure of a movie, IMO....more info
  • A good movie message but a litlle bouring.
    A good movie with a message for everyone but don't really interestin....more info
  • Movie
    This is a wonderful movie. It is a great story with a lot of adventure....more info
  • Jungian Delight
    If Jung were alive this would be his favorite movie. I think God would like it, too. This movie pulls at our hearts because it delivers on a very profound truth: the best way to love someone is to let their reality in. This tale of father and son is about how difficult that can be, for both. This is not the son's story, it is the father's story told in the son. This movie is a real gift. There is an unseen spirit in our reality, a reality hard to capture or communicate. This film presents that spirit beautifully and presents it as a most precious gift. ...more info
  • Great Salesman Flick
    Big Fish is a movie about a familiar character type: the ex-jock who becomes a highly successful traveling Southern salesman. Edward Bloom is a "well-liked" salesman who spins comic fish stories and Davy Crockett style tall tales about his days of athletic glory. Bloom, you might say is an accomplished fibber.

    Edward Bloom is a classic American character, precisely the type of character that Hollywood movies have had a dearth of lately. Big Fish is a comedy masterpiece that you cannot afford to miss. ...more info
  • 10 STARS ! A whopper of a fish tale !!!
    Big fish is a movie that takes you on a visual journey on the lines of "Wizard of Oz."
    It is the story of a Father who has told the Son a lot of tall tales his whole life. (The movie does a splendid job on bringing these tales to life)

    As the son grows up, he feels totally alienated from his Father, because he does not have the slightest idea of who he really is. His whole life, in the son's eyes, has been one big fish tale.

    Through all these tales, we see Edward Bloom (The Father) from sliding down a hospital corridor as a baby, to time literally standing still as he meets his future wife,to him meeting a witch who predicts how he will die , to him meeting Karl, the biggest giant in the world.Also we get to visit the little town of Specter,a town so friendly and laid back, that you must take your shoes off and throw them over the telephone line just to enter!

    There are many adventures,and though the special effects are wonderful, there is a deeper lying love story of mother-father, father-son underlying in this story.

    The story is visually stimulating, and part fairy tale, part truth. It is sad, yet serious.
    But it is thoughly enjoyable to watch.
    It is also a tear jerker too, so make sure you have kleenex at the ending.
    I highly recomend this movie to people of all ages. You will love it!
    ...more info
  • Big Fish
    Great movie. Reminds you not to take yourself so serious and enjoy life and older peoples stories....more info
  • A Fairy Tale for Adults
    "Big Fish" may be Tim Burton's best film. At the very least, it's his most underrated. Everyone always talks about his concept work/production on The Nightmare Before Christmas and his older work, but I'd argue that this is a more solid film than those. Instead of comparing, though, I'll just talk about what makes this movie so great.

    The basic plot is this: Edward Blood was never the best father, especially through his son's eyes. He'd always tell patently false tales about his life, often hogging the attention with his fantastic stories. Now, as he gets closer and closer to death, he recounts his stories to his son and his new daughter in law, in hopes that his son will finally come to know who he truly is. This sort of story was perfect for Tim Burton, because he gets to finally flex his creative muscle and pull it in multiple ways, since the "telling stories" parts of this movie make this more like an anthology than a straight film. Burton's over-the-top style often seems like it is just TOO much in some of his films, but his direction was perfect for this movie.

    It's a whimsical, heart-breaking, fantastic fairy tale for adults. Not in the dark way that people often assume "for adults" means, but what I mean is that the themes in the story are very much about growing up, what it means to be a man, and the pain and joy and terror of getting old. A lot of it is silly, but certainly in a good way. This film is funny, quirky, weird, beautiful, tragic, and hopeful--much like life itself.

    9/10...more info
  • Very touching....
    When I first heard of this movie I expected something crazy and dark (coming from Tim Burton previous movies). I was wonderfully impressed but how meaningful this movie is. Tim Burton taps into the common problem with children and their parents not understanding each other. He beautifully shows how the son of a very imaginative man, doesn't not have a good relationship with his father because he doesn't believe his father's tales of his life. Unfortunately, his father is dying and he goes to see him before he dies. I don't want to give too much of the movie out because i think it is too beautiful to give away. However it is not a easy movie to understand for some you have to look at the detail of the plot to really grasp it. Open your mind and you will not be dissatisfied. ...more info
  • Good, but could've been more
    Tim Burton is such a predictable director of films that even when, on the surface, he seems to be stretching himself, he's actually merely distorting art towards his own relentlessly immature aesthetic. In a sense he's the dark filmic counterpoint to Steven Spielberg's gauzey light pabulum. Neither has a fundamental grasp of what it is to be human, nor the essence of a good tale. Quirkiness does not equal interesting. If you doubt that you must find Tourette's sufferers fascinating rather than annoying.
    Big Fish is TB's attempt to do `adult' drama, yet it so desperately tries to rip off the best in other films- even less successful ones like Forrest Gump, a tale similarly set in Alabama. Along with that film's everyman-ness Big Fish tries to channel the warmth of My Dog Skip, the father-son dynamic of October Sky, & the rites of passage feel of Stand By Me. While it does not succeed as well as the aforementioned trio this is a good movie. Yet, dammit, with another director this could have been a great movie, certainly alot better than Burton's previous bests- the flawed but interesting Ed Wood and Planet Of The Apes. Instead, it's maybe just a little better. It's like when you see the goddess of your dreams but she turns out to be an Anti-Semite, smoker, or lesbian.
    Let me remove myself from despair & give you the capsule tale: an old talespinner- Edward Bloom (Albert Finney) is dying and his son, Will (Billy Crudup), wants to know the reality behind the stories that so charm everyone else- including Ed's wife Sandra (Jessica Lange) and Will's wife Josephine (Marion Cotillard). The last few days of Ed's life give way to flashbacks and fantasies. The young Ed (Ewan McGregor) has all sorts of adventures: he meets a giant named Karl (Matthew McGrory), discovers a Utopian town called Spectre, befriends a witch, catches an elusive legendary big fish, and joins a circus run by a werewolf named Amos Calloway (Danny DeVito). He joins the circus to get information on the girl of his dreams- the young Sandra (Alison Lohman) who's engaged to his childhood nemesis. Later, he becomes a military spy and rescues a pair of gorgeous Chinese Siamese twins named Ping and Jing from the Red Army.... Still, this is overall a good film- there is a wonderful sequence where young Ed 1st sees Sandra and time stops. He walks through hoops and juggler's balls fall to the ground as he walks by. This is a great sequence because it does simulate that feeling, but we've seen the time-stop before. What makes the scene a winner is that, to compensate for that momentary sensation, time has to speed up. Doing so causes Ed his opportunity to meet and woo Sandra for a few years.
    This is truly unique, but- alack- the only instance of using fantasy to serve a narrative purpose, and not just be `ooh-ah' fantastical! That TB only does this once in the film confirms it was a happy accident, not an understood exercise of filmic control. Still, the acting of Finney and McGregor is superb, as are the other supporting performances.
    ...more info
  • Great UNDER rated movie.
    This was very under-rated. Performances and story are great. SHould have been an acad nominee. ...more info
  • This is a keeper
    This is a wonderful story, already well-described by other reviewers. It is simply a fun movie to watch, and one that you can go back to and watch again. I disagree with one reviewer who said that it is not for children. I think children over 12 would easily understand and enjoy the movie....more info
  • great movie, pointless BROWN COVER version
    This review is about the version with the brown cover with a leafless tree behind the black letters BIG FISH. It contains two things: the exact same movie you get for a dollar more than half the price of this version and a hardbound booklet. The booklet contains thirteen pages with one or two sentences on it, and ten pages with a drawing or picture. That's it. If you think such a booklet is worth collecting, go for it. I'd rather collect used tea bags. There are hundreds of reviews of the movie Big Fish. I'll just say that any flick that can make me laugh, cry, say "wow!", think "aw, that's sweet!", jump in surprise and watch again as soon as I've finished seeing the first time is a movie well worth buying. I just wish I'd bought the cheaper version, without the booklet. See a longer review for more details about the movie. Or rent it. Or wait for it to be shown on tv again. The internet movie database will tell you if it's on soon. Better yet, just buy it. It's a wonderful, delightful, very unusual movie. ...more info
  • An excurssion to the best within us
    Some encounters bathe your senses with ravishingly new waters that somehow leave you behind relishing a surprisingly familiar taste. Big Fish, for me, was one such encounter.

    Based on Daniel Wallace's book, "Big Fish - A Story of Mythic Proportions", this is the story of Will's quest to demystify the tales and the life and the very person of his enigmatic father, Edward Bloom. A wonderful fairy-story in its own right, this is essentially an allegory depicting the complex, sometimes funny and often mysterious relationship between a father and his son.

    More than the allegorical function, however, what really arrested my attention was the character and portrayal of Edward Bloom. A look at Bloom and you instinctively know that there goes a happy fella, as if playing in his own `garden'. And it gives you a glimpse of how beautiful this world is, and how wonderful it is to be alive.

    However, it is not the virtue of his `world' per se that gives this flavor to his persona. For his world is in essence little different from ours: a similar blend of things good and evil, of friendship, malice, love, hate, jealousy, escapism, courage, cowardice, honesty, thefts, wars, health and disease...

    Rather, it is Bloom's sense of life that projects the enchantment onto his actions, his people and his country. A sense of life that wants to grow; that refuses to get stuck in comfort and convention; that exercises courage over caution; that pursues beauty...and the best within itself...

    A quote that eloquently reveals this sense of life of Bloom: "There comes a point where a reasonable man will swallow his pride and admit he has made a terrible mistake. The truth is, I was never a reasonable man."

    Ultimately, all of us aspire to lead good lives, although `good' spells different things for different people. I have aspired to attain a free spirit, have believed in never giving up, have hoped to find magic in little things of daily existence, have nurtured ambition and disregarded convention and have happily been a `fool' (more about Bloom's idea of a `fool' later). I have tried and I yet keep trying. Many times have I failed, not only in my concrete pursuits but also im my attempts to reach this ideal. Many times has the loss brought me to the brink of desperation. But I have found my footing, eventually.

    Even before watching this film, I vaguely knew of this ideal, but had no visceral image in my mind of how it might turn out to be. Big Fish provided me with that image. In a sense, it was a very satisfying vindication of my unconscious dreams and beliefs. Yet, amazingly, it was a profoundly and refreshingly new experience.

    And that it continues to be every time I watch it.

    I'll sign off with another quote of Bloom's that is essentially similar to the previous one, yet has an enchanting quality about it:
    "There's a time where a man needs to fight, and a time when he needs to accept that his destiny is lost, that the ship has sailed, and that only a fool would continue.
    The truth is, I've always been a fool."...more info
  • No in-between on this one
    You'll either love it or hate it. I personally love it which makes this a movie you want to own. You'll pick up things each time you watch it. Great story, great message, but as I said it's a bit "quirky". ...more info
  • EXCELLENT MOVIE
    Visually and conceptually brilliant! A very well written, creative movie that is fun and touching!...more info
  • Imaginative Burton Tale
    Based on a book by author Daniel Wallace, Tim Burton's Big Fish embodies many components of a typical Burton film--fantasy, odd characters, imagery, mystical settings--yet, in this instance, it does it with a Southern flavor. The film's main crux is a father-son struggle, and we see them struggle between what is a tall tale and what is truth, what is fact and what is fiction, and what is reality and what is exaggerated. The son, Will (Billy Crudup), has had to listen to his father's tall tales for years, and he believes that this has created a rift between he and his father for years, and that he doesn't know who his "real" father is behind all these fantastical tales. Edward Bloom, who reminisces into the past with tall tales, has many imaginative adventures, including a walk through supposedly haunted woods, an encounter with a witch and a giant man, joining a traveling circus, and trying to get the girl of his dreams.

    Tim Burton's capacity to create symbolism, eccentric characters, colorful scenery and depth in this story help to make it an exceptional film. One of the more telling points of the film is when Bloom, as a youngster, goes through a dark path to find the town of Spector, a sort of Utopia, where everyone stays because they never want to leave. Bloom decides that it isn't right for him to be there, and, while leaving, he promises a young girl that he will come back to the town sometime in the future when he's "meant to" come back. While here, he also meets a struggling poet (Steve Buschemi), who he later winds up helping rob a bank. Later in the story, he realizes why he must come back to this town.

    What I also enjoyed about this film is that there wasn't just an emphasis on plot and imagery; there is also some depth. Some life lessons that the son must learn are to appreciate those close to you and to have faith in something that seems far-fetched or implausible. When learning of his father's decline in health, the son attempts to tie those bonds that have kept them at a distance. He learns that truth and fantasy are closer than he thinks.

    This is a unique film, with some beautiful scenery, exceptional casting, and interesting storytelling.
    ...more info
  • Beautiful story.
    This is a really wonderful story about a larger than life man, and his son's struggles to know who his father really is.

    I really recomend this film - It has great acting, beautiful costumes and is such a fantastical inspring story....more info
  • I'll rank this as one of my all time favorites
    Maybe I like the movie because I come from a family that values telling a good story. Sometimes the fun is seeing how far you can go with it before the listener catches on. And yes, I've heard some stories about family members that I'm not sure are true or not. But enough about me. I really enjoyed the movie. I don't have complaints about any of it, and at the end I cried sentimental tears for a lot longer than I can remember about any other movie I've seen. I especially like how at the end the son came up with a good story to tell his Dad....more info
  • Alright, at times
    I am a big Tim Burton fan, but couldn't really get into this movie. It had spectacular imagery and the acting was wonderful, but story-wise, it didn't really grab my attention and turned out to be dissapointing. Some of the characters were interesting, some annoying and pointless. I definitely liked the 'stories' parts of the film more enjoyable than the present times scenes. I think those dragged the film down. Its sort of a depressing movie when you think about it. I guess you could categorize this as a fantastical drama. At least that is the closest thing that I could think of. ...more info
  • Spanish subtitles.
    This movie doesn't have the spanish subtitles as stated in the product detail.

    I've sent emails to customer service saying this but the only thing they do is send me a replacement (which doesn't have the subtitles either).

    So, if you need them, don't buy this one.

    Edit your post:
    This movie doesn't have the spanish subtitles as stated in the product detail.

    I've sent emails to customer service saying this but the only thing they do is send me a replacement (which doesn't have the subtitles either).

    So, if you need them, don't buy this one. Guidelines
    ...more info