(Recommended by Julia)
Big Fish is a Tim Burton movie and is as surreal as the other films he's directed, which include Edward Scissorhands, Sleepy Hollow, Ed Wood and Beetlejuice to name a few I am fond of.
An all-star cast includes Ewan McGregor and Albert Finney portraying the young and old Edward Bloom, Billy Crudup as Edward's son Will, and Jessica Lange, Helena Bonham Carter, Robert Guillaume, Steve Buscemi, and Danny DeVito in supporting roles.
Will has long been embarrassed and frustrated by his father’s tall tales, and doesn’t speak to his father for three years following his marriage and subsequent move to Paris with his new wife. The estrangement ends when Will receives a phone call from his mother to tell him that Edward is dying. Will longs to reconcile with his father and wants to know who he really is. Edward continues to weave elaborate stories of his life, fantastic tales that appear to be lies to Will.
Will however, learns that within every story his father tells, lies an element of the truth of Edward's life. I think that Will is not unlike most young men, and women for that matter, who grow up not really knowing much about their father. This may be changing in our society today, but for fathers who grew up anytime before the 60’s, I’d say they were hard to understand and didn’t reveal much.
One interesting story Edward relates is about his childhood when he went up to a witch’s house on a dare. This witch had one glass eye in which the viewer could see his/her own death. This knowledge of his ultimate passing, or so the storyteller says, helped Edward to act fearlessly when confronted with danger, because he knew he wouldn’t be dying just yet.
Big Fish is rated PG-13 for a fight scene, some images of nudity, and a suggestive reference, but I think this film is just plain weird and would prove difficult for children to understand, although the images would be interesting for them. It is beautifully filmed, with some very special effects, and I’m not talking car chases here. If you like modern art, or other Tim Burton films, you might really enjoy Big Fish,.