The Big One

"Very Good"

The Big One Review


For a movie with a title like The Big One, Michael Moore's follow-up to Roger & Me is awfully small. It's a mishmash of corporate butt-kickery, political naysaying, and self-indulgence, courtesy of Moore's random walk across America during a late-'90s book tour.

Moore flies from city to city to expose the Hard Times he's become well known for. A Payday factory is shut down. Borders workers in Des Moines are getting wages deducted for a health plan that has no doctor in the city. Moore complains about vegetables on his McDonald's fish sandwich and how life went in the toilet in Flint, Michigan. He goes on a tirade (admittedly, a hysterical tirade) about how Steve Forbes (then running for president) was an alien. He gives a lot of speeches. He shepherds the unemployed (who mysteriously seem to lose their jobs the one day he's in town). And eventually he sets his sights on Phil Knight and Nike, whose outsourced manufacturing has long been rumored to be the product of child labor.

If this all sounds a bit random it is -- only not a bit, it's completely random and without any focus at all. What's "the big one," anyway? Who knows. It's certainly not Phil Knight, who runs around Moore intellectually even though he's clearly in the moral wrong. Moore's big victory: He gets Knight to shake his hand as a pledge to consider opening a factory in Flint. Right. (Per media reports, little to nothing has changed about Nike's manufacturing since this film was made... eight years ago.) (OK, to be honest "The Big One" is Moore's suggested new name for the United States.)

The Big One is funniest when Moore is being alternately ass-kissed and outright lied to by Random House and bookstores where he's speaking. A running gag invloves the Random House publicist "escorts," bubbleheaded women who cringe at Moore's every move. His attempts to undermine their "authority" are priceless, though of course they're largely irrelevant in the grand scheme of the film.

As usual, Moore's running monologue is full of inconsistencies: Moore eats fast food at every meal (not exactly an industry known for treating its employees well). He flies first class while listening to the flight attendents complain that they haven't had a raise in 20 years. He rides the free cart in the airport while complaining about people who ride the free cart in the airport.

The good news is he knows he's ridiculous, and he kind of makes fun of it. Does that absolve Moore of making a movie without much of a point? Not really, but The Big One is ultimately a good intro to Moore's rhetoric -- as if that's something any of us really need.

You can now get the film in a box set with Bowling for Columbine and a bonus DVD featuring outtakes from various speeches Moore has given on his latest book tour.



The Big One

Facts and Figures

Run time: 91 mins

In Theaters: Friday 10th April 1998

Box Office Worldwide: $720.1 thousand

Production compaines: Dog Eat Dog Films, Mayfair Entertainment International, British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC)

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 3.5 / 5

IMDB: 7.2 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director:

Producer:

Starring: as Himself, as Herself - Random House Media Escort, as Himself (as Jim), Brian Danitz as Himself (as Brian)

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

Imperium Movie Review

Imperium Movie Review

First-time filmmaker Daniel Ragussis takes an unusual approach to this thriller. Since it's based on...

The Girl With All the Gifts Movie Review

The Girl With All the Gifts Movie Review

Like a 10-years-later follow-up to 28 Days Later, this small British thriller takes a refreshingly...

The Magnificent Seven Movie Review

The Magnificent Seven Movie Review

Director Antoine Fuqua brings his usual fascination with violence to this remake of the iconic...

Bridget Jones's Baby Movie Review

Bridget Jones's Baby Movie Review

As it's been 12 years since the last Bridget Jones movie, expectations aren't too high...

The Beatles: Eight Days a Week - The Touring Years Movie Review

The Beatles: Eight Days a Week - The Touring Years Movie Review

A-list director Ron Howard worked with the surviving Beatles to assemble this engaging documentary, which...

Blair Witch Movie Review

Blair Witch Movie Review

It's been 17 years since The Blair Witch Project shook up the cinema and created...

Anthropoid Movie Review

Anthropoid Movie Review

Outside the Czech Republic, few people know about Operation Anthropoid, a spy mission in 1943...

Advertisement
Kubo and the Two Strings Movie Review

Kubo and the Two Strings Movie Review

From Laika (The Boxtrolls), this is one of the most beautiful, sophisticated animated films in...

Captain Fantastic Movie Review

Captain Fantastic Movie Review

An offbeat comedy-drama with a timely kick, this charming family road trip takes on some...

Hell or High Water Movie Review

Hell or High Water Movie Review

Sicario screenwriter Taylor Sheridan delivers another fiercely intelligent, engaging story that maintains high suspense while...

The 9th Life of Louis Drax Movie Review

The 9th Life of Louis Drax Movie Review

With heavy overtones of Hitchcockian mystery and intrigue, this stylish thriller is the enjoyably melodramatic...

Kickboxer: Vengeance Movie Review

Kickboxer: Vengeance Movie Review

The 1989 Muay Thai action movie Kickboxer starred a young Jean-Claude Van Damme, who pops...

Julieta Movie Review

Julieta Movie Review

Iconic Spanish filmmaker Pedro Almodovar is back with another powerfully complex female-centred drama, along the...

Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping Movie Review

Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping Movie Review

An astute satire of the pop music business, this raucous mock-documentary is consistently hilarious from...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.