LowComDom Performances Presents
Film Review - Big
I've said to many people that I think Penny Marshall is one of the five best directors working today. She has a style of pulling the most out of every page of a screenplay. I think equally highly of Tom Hanks as an actor. His later films have revealed a craftsmanship to his trade rivaled by precious few in Hollywood.
Bring these two masters together, and you have the promise of the Hollywood film fulfilled. Such is the case in Big. The premise of this film is very simple. What if a young boy wished to be a grown-up and it happened?
Big works this scenario from many angles. It looks at how friends and family would deal with the change. It addresses how the young boy deals with the adult world, without finishing the training he would learn during the teenage years.
The best part of Big is how this kid becomes a senior vice president of a toy company by being ... a kid. Many, if not all of us, in the creative fields tend to have held onto some part of our childhood. It's not just a child-like quality; we can be a kid again when we need to. (That includes our ability to throw tantrums when it doesn't go our way.) The kid in us ignores assumed limitations many adults think are brick walls.
The kid in Big asks the questions no adult worried about his career would. "It's a building that turns into a robot? What's fun about that?" His own toy ideas are brilliant because he's making the toys he would want to play with. There's this wonderful one-two punch of "Be Yourself" along with "Be the Child You Were."
Big also points out that although we might want to skip those difficult teenage years, we need to live through them. This is where we make that transition to adulthood. Hopefully, in that transition, we don't lose all of the child.
Directed by Penny Marshall
Released in 1988
MPAA Rating: PG
Reviewed by Mongo