Metascore
47

Mixed or average reviews - based on 13 Critics What's this?

User Score
7.8

Generally favorable reviews- based on 37 Ratings

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  • Starring: ,
  • Summary: When Pee Wee's beloved bike is stolen, he goes on a cross-country trip to the Alamo because a "physic" tells him it's there. On the way, he finds himself in one oddball encounter after another, from posing as an escaped convict's alibi girlfriend to dancing his way out of a biker brawl in aWhen Pee Wee's beloved bike is stolen, he goes on a cross-country trip to the Alamo because a "physic" tells him it's there. On the way, he finds himself in one oddball encounter after another, from posing as an escaped convict's alibi girlfriend to dancing his way out of a biker brawl in a bar to riding in a big-rig with cackling Large Marge (one year after her death). With so much going on, Pee Wee's adventure could be a Hollywood movie. Collapse
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 8 out of 13
  2. Negative: 4 out of 13
  1. 100
    Everything about Pee-wee's Big Adventure, from its toy-box colors to its superb, hyperanimated Danny Elfman score to the butch-waxed hairdo and wooden-puppet walk of its star and mastermind, Pee-wee Herman, is pure pleasure.
  2. Reviewed by: Staff (Not Credited)
    88
    Inspired lunacy, Pee-wee's big adventure is one of the most inventive films in recent memory. This clever and wholly original work incorporates a wide variety of cinematic tools with a fresh and unique sense of style.
  3. Reviewed by: Staff (Not Credited)
    80
    Burton's first feature revels in the weird, the unpredictable, the infantile and the absurd. A dazzling debut.
  4. 70
    With all these safety features built in, this 1985 film is too well padded to qualify as genuinely radical wit, but in an even-toned, TV sort of way it's mildly amusing and inventive throughout.
  5. If Pee-Wee wasn't the most engaging physical comedian since Dick Van Dyke, it would be disastrous. As it is, the opening works well enough to have viewers completely hooked by the time he sets out on the road, like Huck Finn, with his clothes wrapped up in a handerchief on a stick. [10 Aug 1985, p.E9]
  6. Reviewed by: Staff (Not Credited)
    60
    Children should love the film and adults will be dismayed by the light brushstrokes with which Paul Reubens (one of three credited screenwriters, but star-billed under his stage name, Pee-wee Herman) suggests touches of Buster Keaton and Eddie Cantor.
  7. 0
    Nothing, absolutely nothing, at either location is the slightest bit funny. [13 Sep 1985, p.C]

See all 13 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 3 out of 3
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 3
  3. Negative: 0 out of 3
  1. Aug 11, 2011
    10
    I find it astonishing that this film, Tim Burton's directorial debut Pee-wee's Big Adventure, has such a low score here at Metacritic.I find it astonishing that this film, Tim Burton's directorial debut Pee-wee's Big Adventure, has such a low score here at Metacritic. Although I'm not the biggest fan of Burton's style and find his work to be mostly overrated, this movie is a masterpiece of camp that led to one of the greatest 'children's shows' of all-time, Pee-Wee's Playhouse. The deadpan humor never gets old.. Expand
  2. May 12, 2012
    8
    I find it so funny. This movie has a different style compared to most comedies. Overall, the story here is thin ice, but the humor is great.
  3. Jun 22, 2013
    7
    A fun filled adventure that just proves you don't come between a man and his bike. A solid start in the very mixed directorial career of Mr.A fun filled adventure that just proves you don't come between a man and his bike. A solid start in the very mixed directorial career of Mr. Tim Burton. Expand

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