Tom Hanks and Robert Loggia perform on the giant piano at New York toy store FAO Schwarz  from a classic scene in the 1988 film

Tom Hanks and Robert Loggia perform on the giant piano at New York toy store FAO Schwarz from a classic scene in the 1988 film

Reel Reviews: Film stands the test of time

Splash might have made Tom Hanks a star, but Big was what made him a superstar.

  • Jul. 13, 2012 8:00 a.m.

Splash might have made Tom Hanks a star, but Big was what made him a superstar.

The reason is simple, in Splash Hanks plays a man who falls for a mermaid. In Big he plays a 13-year-old boy trapped in a man’s body.

It was this portrayal of innocent and brash Josh Baskin that made us all realize there was more to Hanks than pulling faces.

Big is also a bit of a time capsule. Forty year olds will want to see it as a trip down memory lane. Kids will want to see it, if only because they rush to be adults.

If your wish is a movie about male strippers who are supposed to be attractive or a rockumentary about a blue-haired girl who’s supposed to be able to sing, these options are currently available to you. If you want to take your kids to something wholesome and worthy, go see Big, playing only once, at 11 a.m. Saturday at Vernon’s Galaxy Cinemas.

We say, “Go Big, or go home.”

TAYLOR: This movie has at least three iconic scenes that every kid has seen parodied, at least on The Simpsons. Why not take your kids to the theatre to see where they originated?

HOWE: A couple of scenes stuck in my memory even before I watched this again; the first being the moment he looks in the mirror after his wish is fulfilled, seeing himself as a man. The second scene is when he plays the walk-on piano with his boss: “Heart and soul, da da da da dada…”

TAYLOR: The film has a bit of a weird design to it. It makes the ‘80s look like the ‘50s, but I guess if you were a kid in the ‘80s and wanted to be different, you popped your collar and greased up your hair. So maybe the correlation is valid. I think, however, that it’s a product of the film being directed by Penny Marshall, well familiar with the time. The only reason I bring it up is because of the pronounced innocence of the boys, for instance, although being 13, wearing jammies with cowboys on them.

HOWE: There’s been a lot of remakes of this, not so of the film, but of the concept: Freaky Friday and Thirteen Going on Thirty just to name a couple. But if you want to see the best, parents take your kids to this. Tom Hanks is great as playing the innocent young man.

TAYLOR: Make sure your kids are old enough to understand about the birds and bees. Josh Baskin doesn’t stay an innocent 30 year old for long. You’re not going to be exposed to anything dirty or obscene, but there is a clearly intimated sexual relationship with Josh’s girlfriend.

HOWE: So every 13-year-old boy’s dream then?

Taylor gives Big 3.5 cans of silly string out of 5.

Howe gives it 4 computerized comics out of 5.

Brian Taylor and Peter Howe are movie critics living in Vernon, B.C.