6.4/10
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The Big White (2005)

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To remedy his financial problems, a travel agent has his eye on a frozen corpse, which just happens to be sought after by two hitmen.

Director:

Mark Mylod

Writer:

Collin Friesen

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Robin Williams ... Paul Barnell
Holly Hunter ... Margaret Barnell
Giovanni Ribisi ... Ted Waters
Tim Blake Nelson ... Gary
W. Earl Brown ... Jimbo
Woody Harrelson ... Raymond Barnell
Alison Lohman ... Tiffany
Billy Merasty Billy Merasty ... Cam (as William Merasty)
Marina Stephenson Kerr ... Avis
Ralph Alderman Ralph Alderman ... Mr. Branch
Frank Adamson ... Detective
Andrea Shawcross ... Hair Stylist
Ryan Miranda Ryan Miranda ... Korean-am Teenager
Craig March ... Howard
Ty Wood ... Paperboy
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Storyline

In the middle of Alaska, travel agent Paul Barnell is near bankruptcy. Desperate to help himself and his beloved, mentally ill wife Margaret, Paul discovers a dead body and passes it off as his missing brother Raymond, whose life is insured for up to $1,000,000. Everybody is duped, except for workaholic insurance investigator Ted Waters, who sets out to expose Paul, in hopes of being promoted out of Alaska. Meanwhile, two rookie hit men, Gary and Jimbo, discover Paul took 'their' body and kidnap Margaret, demanding the body back. Then, Raymond turns up alive, wanting in on the action... Written by willyboy

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

When you need somebody, any body will do.

Genres:

Comedy | Crime | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language including sexual references and some violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

Germany | Canada | New Zealand | USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

3 December 2005 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Golpe de suerte See more »

Filming Locations:

Alaska, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$18,000,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

To prepare for the role as a woman with Tourette's syndrome, Holly Hunter travelled to the small town of Wolfville, Nova Scotia to meet with Dr. B. Duncan McKinlay, a psychologist with Tourette's Syndrome presenting for two days in the area. Ms. Hunter sat through both days of Dr. McKinlay's presentation, disguising herself in a hat and dark glasses so that the many local parents and educators she was sitting amongst would not realize they were in fact sharing the room with an Academy Award winning actress. See more »

Goofs

After the insurance investigators are done viewing Ted's video (which exposes the man loading the snowmobile as a fraud), the camera then pans over to Ted at his desk. Before it can pull in to a closer shot the boom mic (and part of the boom itself) is visible at the top of the frame. See more »

Quotes

Paul Barnell: [Margaret is bound and gagged in back seat of Jimbo's car] Why did you gag her?
Jimbo: [exasperated] You know!
See more »

Connections

References Law & Order (1990) See more »

Soundtracks

P' Twaang! (Snowy Remix)
Written by Robert Mothersbaugh (as Bob Mothersbaugh)
Performed by Robert Mothersbaugh (as Bob Mothersbaugh), Mark Mothersbaugh, Josh Mancell,
Bob Casale
Courtesy of The Wipeouters
See more »

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User Reviews

 
The funniest film of 2005!!
7 March 2006 | by dom462See all my reviews

Paul Barnell (Robin Williams) is an Alaskan travel agent having financial problems. His brother has been missing for some time and he attempts to cash in the life insurance policy worth $1m. Unfortunately, the insurance agent (Giovanni Ribisi) won't let him cash it in until his brother has been missing for a much longer period or until the body is found. One day whilst putting trash in a dumpster Paul finds a corpse that has been left there by two amateur criminals. He then has the idea of taking the corpse away and using it to pass off as his brother. What unfolds is a complicated plot involving the insurance claims worker desperate to prove that the corpse is not the brother, the two criminals attempt to recover the corpse by kidnapping Paul's mentally ill wife (Holly Hunter) and the return of Paul's lost brother (Woody Harrelson).

This film is hilarious and in my opinion is the funniest film of 2005. The complicated plot allows it to have plenty of comedic moments and well delivered lines by all actors especially Robin Williams.

The plot is very reminiscent to that of Fargo and A Simple Plan. All three films have a storyline involving Money, Death and Snow. Fargo and A Simple Plan have are more serious tone than this film does and allow the cold atmosphere they are set in to make the story more colder than it already is. The comedy in Fargo is much more subtle than this film and does not go as far. The problem this film has is that the quantity of comedy in this film almost squeezes the coldness out of the plot.

This film is definitely worth watching for the high comedy value it has but if you are a fan of Fargo and A Simple Plan looking for a similar dark cold thriller, prepare to be disappointed.


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