The Movie Special

DVD Reviews 'n More

THE BIG YEAR (2011)

I find it interesting that somebody has actually financed a movie about bird watching. That and the fact that this movie has three of my favourite comedic actors in it made me actually want to watch it.

The Big Year is based on a nonfiction book by Mark Obmascik. The name refers to an annual “birding” competition in which during one single year the birders try to spot the most species of birds in North America. As the movie proceeds to show there are actual birding enthusiasts who dedicate a whole year to the competition. In the movie we meet three such birders: Stu Preissler (Steve Martin) – a newly retired, highly successful CEO, Kenny Bostick (Owen Wilson)  – the current holder of the world record of the The Big Year, and Brad Harris (Jack Black) – a divorced unsuccessful office worker. Each one of the characters comes with his own set of problems: Bostick’s wife wants him to spend more time home helping her to get pregnant, Stu is going to be a grandpa and is finding it hard to stay retired, and Brad basically has no life. While trying to win the The Big Year they become either friends or frenemies and sort through their life situations.

David Frankel (The Devil Wears Prada and Marley & Me) has directed a sweet family comedy with a heart. Apart from the main charters Dianne Wiest and Brian Dennehy play Brad’s parents and Rashida Jones is Ellie – Brad’s bird-calling crush. The acting is pleasant – not outstanding – and the scenery is gorgeous. There are no laugh out loud scenes and a smile is the closest you get to a laugh, but I found the movie harmlessly entertaining.

A sweet and easy-to-watch movie. Just remember: First rule of The Big Year – You do not talk about The Big Year.

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2 comments on “THE BIG YEAR (2011)

  1. Ryan Bond
    April 1, 2012

    Reblogged this on The Film Discussion Buzz.

  2. I Made You A Mixtape
    April 12, 2012

    LMAO@at the beginning of the trailer!

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