Metascore
58

Mixed or average reviews - based on 42 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 24 out of 42
  2. Negative: 3 out of 42
  1. Reviewed by: Glenn Kenny
    100
    Big Fish really is a big delight.
  2. Reviewed by: Clint Morris
    90
    A tale that's so enriching, so heartwarming, so funny, so touching and so breathtaking, you'll wonder why the king of wackiness didn't branch out sooner.
  3. 88
    Director Tim Burton finally hooks the one that got away: a script that challenges and deepens his visionary talent.
  4. A word of warning. Big Fish is so strange and so literary that audiences seeking conventional fare may get impatient with it. But it always takes effort to catch the big ones. This one is worth it.
  5. 88
    Even with Burton's imagination turning its trademark cartwheels, the film's big beating heart holds the whimsical offshoots steady.
  6. Reviewed by: Mike Clark
    88
    Has enough tasty bait to satisfy an array of moviegoers: Burton fans, Albert Finney fans, fans of tall tales well spun by experts and fans of movies that don't look like any other.
  7. 88
    This picture boasts a story about a yarn-spinning Southern father (Albert Finney) and a sober-sided son (Billy Crudup) that gives it ballast and staying power beyond anything in previous, precious Burton fables like "Edward Scissorhands" or "Ed Wood."
User Score
8.2

Universal acclaim- based on 256 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 11 out of 120
  1. Jul 16, 2012
    8
    This review contains spoilers, click full review link to view. Big Fish is a peculiar movie, even for being a Tim Burton picture. It is about the life of a man whose father loves to tells stories from the time he was young, but the problem is that the anecdotes are hard to believe, because there are extremely rare and unlikely to happen; for example the story of the eye of a witch that can tell you when you are going to die, the one of a giant who is convinced to leave and stop terrifying a town, the circus that is managed by a werewolf or the scape from a war with two Siamese. All this produce constant fights between Edward and his son; and this is one of the topics that Tim Burton treats on his films. Although the other topics from this great director are less developed they are also noticeable: the gothic and expressionist characters (the witch, the giant and the circus manager) and environments (the forest and the witch house); and the contrast between two worlds represented graphically, the present in which Edward tells his stories (darker or opaque colors) and the past in which the stories take place (bright and attractive colors).
    The thing is that does not matter if the anecdotes were real or not, you decide what you want to believe, you can live a boring life and had nothing interesting to tell, no dreams, no hope, no goals; or you can live an amazing life, with endless stories to tell and enjoy being a Big Fish.
    Full Review »
  2. Nov 2, 2010
    0
    This was a fairly trite and predictable story in my view. A real dissapoint after watching Edward scissorhandy. You get the feeling that burton has sold out. These kind of mythic, sweeping movies have the same feel as forest gump. They are all too transparent with their message and leave nothing to the imagination. The characters are not believable and it feels an hour too long. Full Review »
  3. Dec 23, 2013
    7
    A very interesting film. It's beautiful and unique. It's very entertaining and it is great because it causes you to question the boundary between fact and fiction. Full Review »