Head to Head – Big Fish

Welcome to the latest edition of Head to Head, in which our Quickflix critic takes on our readers in a rip-snorting battle to the death! You pick the film, and we pick the fight!

This week, Matt Allpress expressed his adoration for Tim Burton‘s Big Fish. For his troubles, he picked up a double pass to Toy Story 1 and 2 (in 3D). You can win free movie tickets too by sending your mini-reviews to us here at Quickflix!

Matt Allpress will argue FOR the film while Quickflix critic Simon Miraudo will argue AGAINST it. Let us know in the comments section below who you agree with. Spare no vitriol! Choose your side! There can only be one winner!

Matt Allpress – 4/5

Is there anything more refreshing than Tim Burton working with someone other than Johnny Depp? I think it is unlikely. Ewan McGregor, in all his innocence and glory is loveable throughout; Helena Bonham Carter gives a performance that almost makes forgivable her effort as Bellatrix Lestrange in the Order Of The Phoenix, and the exaggerated, luscious palette create a welcome diversion from the general matte and ill-vibrance Burton is so well acquainted with. The flawlessly positioned parallels of Spectre and the ‘real’ world only serve to make the Big Fish universe a striking allegory for the cultural binary oppositions we face in our real world. Big Fish stretches the imagination with such beauty and a clear acceptance of its implausible plot that no amount of cynicism from Simon could make this any less than one of my favourite movies.

Cynicism?! From me! I resent that Mr. Allpress. That being said, I am not a fan of Big Fish (or Burton’s work in general). The man made one genuinely great film the in 1980s (Beetlejuice) and has spent the past 20 years rehashing the same old shtick over and over again. Sometimes it works (Ed Wood, Mars Attacks), but as the years go on he slides further into self parody (Corpse Bride, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory). “Oooh, look how kooky and weird my films are.” Not quite Mr. Burton. What you call kooky, I call soulless. Big Fish isn’t his worst offender, but seeing Burton attempt something so saccharine is kind of unsettling. Although the film features some great performances from McGregor, Billy Crudup and Albert Finney, it cannot make up for its emotional shortcomings. Burton is the Tin Man, and here he is pretending to have a heart.

Now it’s over to you! What are your thoughts on Big Fish? Let us know in the comments section below. If you would like to be featured in the next Head to Head and possibly win some free movie tickets, send your mini-reviews to us here at Quickflix!

One Response to “Head to Head – Big Fish”

  1. I'm with Matt on this one. I don't think emotion really was a big part of this story. Although I can see how you would think it's a father son type pic. I love the fantastical stories told and the beautiful and other worldly settings they are shown in. I would think that Bryan Fuller with Barry Sonnenfeld (pushing daises) would have made it even more spectacular.

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