8.0/10
369,027
829 user 239 critic

Big Fish (2003)

Trailer
2:28 | Trailer

Watch Now

From $2.99 (SD) on Amazon Video

ON DISC
A frustrated son tries to determine the fact from fiction in his dying father's life.

Director:

Writers:

(novel), (screenplay)
Reviews
Popularity
1,130 ( 104)
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 1 win & 68 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Drama | Fantasy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

A gentle man, with scissors for hands, is brought into a new community after living in isolation.

Director: Tim Burton
Stars: Johnny Depp, Winona Ryder, Dianne Wiest
Drama | Horror | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

The infamous story of Benjamin Barker, a.k.a. Sweeney Todd, who sets up a barber shop down in London which is the basis for a sinister partnership with his fellow tenant, Mrs. Lovett. Based on the hit Broadway musical.

Director: Tim Burton
Stars: Johnny Depp, Helena Bonham Carter, Alan Rickman
Beetlejuice (1988)
Comedy | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

When a recently-deceased ghost couple find their now-vacant home invaded by an obnoxious family, they hire a sleazy ghost who gets rid of humans to help them.

Director: Tim Burton
Stars: Alec Baldwin, Geena Davis, Michael Keaton
Sleepy Hollow (1999)
Fantasy | Horror | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Ichabod Crane is sent to Sleepy Hollow to investigate the decapitations of 3 people with the culprit being the legendary apparition, the Headless Horseman.

Director: Tim Burton
Stars: Johnny Depp, Christina Ricci, Miranda Richardson
Dark Shadows (2012)
Comedy | Fantasy | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

An imprisoned vampire, Barnabas Collins, is set free and returns to his ancestral home, where his dysfunctional descendants are in need of his protection.

Director: Tim Burton
Stars: Johnny Depp, Michelle Pfeiffer, Eva Green
Action | Adventure
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

When a corrupt businessman and the grotesque Penguin plot to take control of Gotham City, only Batman can stop them, while the Catwoman has her own agenda.

Director: Tim Burton
Stars: Michael Keaton, Danny DeVito, Michelle Pfeiffer
Mars Attacks! (1996)
Comedy | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Earth is invaded by Martians with unbeatable weapons and a cruel sense of humor.

Director: Tim Burton
Stars: Jack Nicholson, Pierce Brosnan, Sarah Jessica Parker
Batman (1989)
Action | Adventure
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

The Dark Knight of Gotham City begins his war on crime with his first major enemy being the clownishly homicidal Joker.

Director: Tim Burton
Stars: Michael Keaton, Jack Nicholson, Kim Basinger
Ed Wood (1994)
Biography | Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

Ambitious but troubled movie director, Edward D. Wood Jr, tries his best to fulfill his dream, despite his lack of support.

Director: Tim Burton
Stars: Johnny Depp, Martin Landau, Sarah Jessica Parker
Moulin Rouge! (2001)
Drama | Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

A poet falls for a beautiful courtesan whom a jealous duke covets.

Director: Baz Luhrmann
Stars: Nicole Kidman, Ewan McGregor, John Leguizamo
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

A family determined to get their young daughter into the finals of a beauty pageant take a cross-country trip in their VW bus.

Directors: Jonathan Dayton, Valerie Faris
Stars: Steve Carell, Toni Collette, Greg Kinnear
Sin City (2005)
Crime | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

A film that explores the dark and miserable town, Basin City, and tells the story of three different people, all caught up in violent corruption.

Directors: Frank Miller, Robert Rodriguez, and 1 more credit »
Stars: Mickey Rourke, Clive Owen, Bruce Willis
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
...
Beamen (as Loudon Wainwright)
...
...
...
Edit

Storyline

United Press International journalist Will Bloom and his French freelance photojournalist wife Josephine Bloom, who is pregnant with their first child, leave their Paris base to return to Will's hometown of Ashton, Alabama on the news that his father, Edward Bloom, stricken with cancer, will soon die, he being taken off chemotherapy treatment. Although connected indirectly through Will's mother/Edward's wife, Sandra Bloom, Will has been estranged from his father for three years since his and Josephine's wedding. Will's issue with his father is the fanciful tales Edward has told of his life all his life, not only to Will but the whole world. As a child when Edward was largely absent as a traveling salesman, Will believed those stories, but now realizes that he does not know his father, who, as he continues to tell these stories, he will never get to know unless Edward comes clean with the truth before he dies. On the brink of his own family life beginning, Will does not want to be the ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

An adventure as big as life itself.


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for a fight scene, some images of nudity and a suggestive reference | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Official Sites:

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

9 January 2004 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El gran pez  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$70,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$207,377 (USA) (14 December 2003)

Gross:

$66,257,002 (USA) (14 March 2004)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

| | (8 channels)

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Tim Burton: [distorted female face] Edward imagines Jenny becoming the Witch, with her face aged and wrinkled and one eye missing. See more »

Goofs

While playing football in Ashton, Edward Bloom is running with the ball when two players from the opposing team dive to try to tackle him, and dive off screen. As the camera continues to reveal more of the field, the players are nowhere to be seen. They should have still been on the ground where they had fallen. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Young Ed Bloom: There are some fish that cannot be caught. It's not that they are faster or stronger than other fish, they're just touched by something extra.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The Columbia logo runs in reverse. See more »

Connections

References Pee-wee's Big Adventure (1985) See more »

Soundtracks

Sammie, Where Have You Been So Long?
Written and Performed by Dock Boggs
Courtesy of Revenant Records
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Tim Burton's Surprise Heartwarmer
16 February 2004 | by (Virginia) – See all my reviews

I approach Tim Burton films with a certain trepidation. Will it be "Edward Scissorhands" or "Batman II?" With Burton you could get a quirky comedy, a dark thriller, or sweet morality tale. And there's always the possibility of Danny DeVito chomping down on a raw fish.

"Big Fish" combines Burton's unusual humor with a heart-wrenching story of a father-son deathbed reconciliation. Albert Finney and Ewan McGregor share the role of Ed Bloom, one of the big fish from the movie's title while an SUV-sized catfish plays the other. Bloom is a metaphorical and literal big fish in the small pond of Ashton, Alabama in this tale told mostly through flashback. Jessica Lange plays his wife and Billy Crudup plays the son, Will, estranged from his father for the past three years. Father and son are reunited as Finney lies dying of cancer.

Ed Bloom has spent his life spinning his personal history into mythological proportions: an early encounter with a very tall man becomes a battle with a house-sized giant; a rural village is depicted as heaven on earth; military service during the Korean War morphs into a behind-the-lines mission that would make Duke Nukem proud. Originally a true believer, Will now knows everything his father has told him was not just an exageration or even a tall tale but an outright lie. In his effort to understand the truth behind his father's stories he learns to love the man as well as the mythology. And Burton delivers a terrific punchline at the end of the film that left me both tickled and weeping, a truly weird emotional state.

Burton deals with mythic themes in "Big Fish." Besides the surface story of the generational tension between father and son he explores the metaphor of the big-fish-in-a-small-pond by examining the impact Ed Bloom has had on the lives he's touched in his workaday contacts with colleagues, customers (he's a traveling salesman), and people in the small towns across the South. Not exactly "It's A Wonderful Life," he still manages to show how all of us -- even the little fish -- have profound effects on the people around us. And of course love -- unrequited and reciprocated -- control almost all of Ed's many adventures.

The acting is wonderful. You will actually believe two Brits and a Scot (Finney, Helena Bonham Carter, and McGregor) are natives of small town Alabama. Lange brings dignity and brio to the role of the long "suffering" wife -- and she still looks great(!)-- you believe she has had a long and loving life with Finney/McGregor. DeVito is a delight in the role of a circus ringmaster. But the scene-stealer is Bonham Carter in the dual role of Jenny and the crone witch.

I rated this movie ten stars and when you see it you'll do the same.


210 of 249 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Contribute to This Page