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The Big Year (2011)

PG  |   |  Comedy  |  14 October 2011 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.2/10 from 32,980 users   Metascore: 53/100
Reviews: 125 user | 109 critic | 29 from Metacritic.com

Two bird enthusiasts try to defeat the cocky, cutthroat world record holder in a year-long bird-spotting competition.



(screenplay), (book)
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Historical Montage Narrator (voice)
Vicki's Fiancée
Greg Kean ...
Birder's Daughter (as Eva Allan)


In birding, a Big Year is seeing or hearing as many different species of birds as possible in a calendar year. Three men pursue the Birder of the Year title: Kenny Bostick, who's seen a record 732 in a past big year, Stu Preissler, newly retired, and Brad Harris, who narrates the story. Life gets in the way: Bostick's wife wants a baby, Stu's firm needs him for sensitive negotiations, and Brad, divorced and underemployed at 36, has an encouraging mom and a disapproving dad. They criss-cross the continent (including a trip to Alaska's westernmost island), follow migration patterns, and head for storms that force birds to ground. Who will win, at what cost, and with what rewards? Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis



Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for language and some sensuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

14 October 2011 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

O Grande Ano  »

Box Office


$41,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$3,251,884 (USA) (14 October 2011)


$7,204,138 (USA) (16 December 2011)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Steve Carell and Dustin Hoffman were both attached to star at one point. See more »


While the office workers at the nuclear plant wear security badges, they do not have personal radiation monitors which are required at all US facilities. See more »


[from trailer]
Brad Harris: There is going to be major fallout in a few hours.
Bill Clemont: Nuclear fallout?
Brad Harris: Bird fallout.
See more »

Crazy Credits

During the end credits, photos of every bird found by the winner are shown. See more »


Features Wheel of Fortune (1983) See more »


Surfin' Bird
Written by Al Frazier (as Albert Frazier), John Harris, Turner Wilson Jr. and Carl White
Performed by The Trashmen
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

the big year reaches inside
20 January 2012 | by (cincinnati) – See all my reviews

i was hesitant to watch the big year. i saw the critic reviews and saw that it flopped horribly at the box office. but i could not resist to watch it because i like jack black and love Owen Wilson.

i am more than happy i decided to watch the big year. i gave it a 9 out of 10. i thought it was well written and the cast did a nice job of drawing you into the story. i did not feel like i was watch jack black or Owen Wilson, i was watching brad and bostick.

i knew nothing about "birding". if you do then you would definitely love this movie. if you don't , don't worry you don't have to. i didn't and i still enjoyed it very much.

the movie was not too long or too short. there was not too much comedy or a lack of it either. the movie was the perfect length , had just the right amount of comedy and a perfect touch of drama.

this movie will make you chuckle a few times, make you sympathize with the characters and choke you up a couple times.

i highly recommend you watch it and enjoy it.

22 of 40 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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