Big Top Pee-wee (1988)

PG  |   |  Adventure, Comedy, Romance  |  22 July 1988 (USA)
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Ratings: 4.9/10 from 7,114 users  
Reviews: 43 user | 13 critic

Pee-Wee is now a successful small-town farmer, engaged to schoolteacher Winnie. A traveling circus arrives and Pee-Wee and his talking pet pig Vance agree to help them win over the bitter townsfolk. He also falls for trapeze artist Gina.



, (as George McGrath)
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Pee-wee Herman (as Pee-wee Herman)
Gina Piccolapupula
Vance the Pig (voice)
Midge Montana
Albert Henderson ...
Mr. Ryan
Jack Murdock ...
David Byrd ...
Mary Jackson ...
Mrs. Dill
Mrs. Haynes
Leo Gordon ...
Joe the Blacksmith (as Leo V. Gordon)
Jay Robinson ...


In the sequel to "Pee Wee's Big Adventure", Pee-Wee Herman has had enough with the fame and constant media attention he received after the events of the first movie, so he's now a simple farmer living quietly in a small town. But after a big storm blows their way, a circus ends up at Pee Wee's farm. So he lets the circus stay at his farm for a while. The circus decides to put on a show with one lovable star, Pee-Wee! Also, a love triangle develops between Pee-Wee, his nice fiancée Winnie, who's the local schoolteacher, and mysterious loner Gina, the circus' attractive trapeze artist. The outcome of this subplot is somewhat unexpected. Written by James Preston

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Hero. Lover. Legend.


PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

22 July 1988 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Big Top Pee-Wee - la mia vita picchiatella  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$15,122,324 (USA)

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


"Big top" is a common term for the biggest tent in early-20th century circuses. Hence the movie's title works both literally and as a pun. See more »


When the Sheriff enters Mr. Ryan's Store to tell everyone about the Storm, Otis switches from standing next to the Sheriff and Mr. Ryan between shots. See more »


Andy: You okay, Boss?
Mace Montana: Well, my chin's banged up pretty bad... I think my ribs are broke... an' it feels like I punctured a major organ, Andy... but I'm circus.
See more »

Crazy Credits

After the credits, a short cartoon plays featuring snacks singing about getting refreshments at the theater lobby. See more »


Referenced in Swimming with Sharks (1994) See more »


The Girl On The Flying Trapeze
Written by Danny Elfman
Performed by Paul Reubens (as Pee-Wee Herman)
See more »

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User Reviews

This movie is different from the first movie and trust me that is not a good thing.
21 March 2007 | by See all my reviews

We somehow went from a rousing cross country adventure that was the first Pee Wee movie with lots of colorful characters and some really strange situations, but overall funny to a one town movie that is strange and not in a good way. We don't get the scenery and we do not get a very good or funny movie this time. Maybe it is because Phil Hartman did not help with the script or maybe because Tim Burton did not direct, but this movie is absolutely nothing like the first film and as I said before that is not a good thing. This time we have Pee Wee on a rather boring farm, where he has a talking pig and the towns folk are a bunch of bores. Then the circus gets blown into town and that shakes things up. That is about it, besides the odd love triangle involving Pee Wee...who for some reason goes from a loner and a rebel to kind of a perv. There are a couple of chuckles to be found near the beginning of the movie, but once the circus hits it is rather tedious to watch. Like I said you go from all the wacky stuff in big adventure to one setting and one setting only. You have a few stars in this one, but they don't add to the movie, only to the misery. The ending is so stupid I could not watch it again. All in all I would say skip this movie unless you are a die hard Pee Wee fan which I am not. He was amusing in the bizarre adventure world, but he comes across as rather embarrassing and even creepy in the Big Top.

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