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Big Review

Other Critics provided by

Critics scores range from 0 to 100, with higher scores indicating more favorable reviews.

  • 4.0

    out of 100

    Generally favorable reviews
    based on a weighted average of all
    critic review scores.

  • 100

    out of 100

    USA Today

    Unpretentious as it is, Big takes you beyond laughter, to where you live. And there's nothing small about that. [3 Jun 1988, p.1D]

  • 50

    out of 100

    Chicago Sun-Times

    It's too involved in administering its reversion fantasy to acquisition-guilty yuppies to cast an eye on its own venture status. And the contradictions don't stop there. That this celebration of the Peter Pan syndrome was directed by a woman, Penny Marshall, adds another layer of dishonesty. [3 Jun 1988, p.31]

  • 75

    out of 100

    Chicago Tribune Dave Kehr

    Big moves with polish and assurance. It's too soon to tell whether Marshall has anything of her own to say, but Big is proof that she can handle the Hollywood machine, and that is no small thing.

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  • 80

    out of 100

    Los Angeles Times Kevin Thomas

    The greatest thing about Big is that its makers have known how to end it in a thoroughly satisfying fashion, which is always the challenge-and often the stumbling block-of fantasy. In never confusing what is child-like with childishness, Big is actually a refreshingly grown-up comedy-for the entire family. [3 Jun 1988, p.1]

  • 80

    out of 100

    Wall Street Journal Julie Salamon

    I am glad to be able to say that all these clever and talented people have actually come up with the goods. The biggest goodie is Tom Hanks as the little boy after his wish has been granted. Much of the comedy in this movie is physical. Without forcing the matter Mr. Hanks has a startling ability to take on the mannerisms and facial expressions of an adolescent. [2 Jun 1988, p.1]

  • 88

    out of 100

    ReelViews James Berardinelli

    Although Big is generally lighthearted, it rarely plays for stupid laughs. There are a few of these, but the film avoids sacrificing character integrity for the cheap guffaw.

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For Families provided by Common Sense Media

OK for kids 13+

Wonderful story with some very mature material.

What Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this movie came out before the PG-13 rating, so it earned a PG rating. However, if this movie were released today, it would almost certainly be rated PG-13. There is some strong language (including one f-bomb) and some sexual situations (including a man fondling a woman's breast). There's also some drinking, smoking, and mild violence. A child forced to grow up too quickly is exposed to corporate life, sex, and other adult matters.

  • Families can talk about Josh's experiences as an adult. Why does he want to be big, and why does he ultimately decide he wants to be small?
  • If you could be any age, which age would you pick? Why?
  • What are the best things about being a kid? What are the advantages to being an adult?

The good stuff
  • message true0

    Messages: Some innuendo and racy humor for a PG.

  • rolemodels true1

    Role models: Josh learns why it's better to enjoy childhood than it is to rush into being a grownup.

What to watch for
  • violence false2

    Violence: Two men fight and the result is a bloody nose. A gunshot.

  • sex false3

    Sex: Some innuendo and breast discussion. Momentary brassiere exposure with hands-on inspection. Some kissing.

  • language false3

    Language: "S--t," "damn," "bastard," "hell," "assh--e"; "f--k" is used once.

  • consumerism false0

    Consumerism: Not an issue

  • drugsalcoholtobacco false3

    Drinking, drugs and smoking: Susan smokes frequently; adult characters (including Josh in his adult appearance) drink.