June 3rd, 1988



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Still of Tom Hanks and Robert Loggia in BigStill of Tom Hanks in BigStill of Tom Hanks and Jared Rushton in Big

When a boy wishes to be big at a magic wish machine, he wakes up the next morning and finds himself in an adult body literally overnight.

Release Year: 1988

Rating: 7.2/10 (69,933 voted)

Critic's Score: 70/100

Director: Penny Marshall

Stars: Tom Hanks, Elizabeth Perkins, Robert Loggia

A young boy makes a wish at a fairground machine to be big. He wakes up the following morning to find that his wish has been granted and his body has grown older over night. But he is still the same 12 year old kid on the inside. Now he must learn how to cope with the unfamiliar world of grown ups including getting a job, and having his first romantic encounter with a woman. What will he find out about this strange world?

Writers: Gary Ross, Anne Spielberg

Tom Hanks - Josh Baskin
Elizabeth Perkins - Susan
Robert Loggia - MacMillan
John Heard - Paul
Jared Rushton - Billy
David Moscow - Young Josh
Jon Lovitz - Scotty Brennen
Mercedes Ruehl - Mrs. Baskin
Josh Clark - Mr. Baskin
Kimberlee M. Davis - Cynthia Benson
Oliver Block - Freddie Benson
Erika Katz - Cynthia's Friend
Allan Wasserman - Gym Teacher
Mark Ballou - Derek
Gary Howard Klar - Ticket Taker (as Gary Klar)

Taglines: Yesterday Josh Wanted Everything In Life - Girls...Money...Cars... Today, All His Wildest Dreams Have Come True!

Release Date: 3 June 1988

Filming Locations: 435 Greenmount Avenue, Cliffside Park, New Jersey, USA

Box Office Details

Budget: $18,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend: AUD 612,644 (Australia) (19 November 1988)

Gross: $114,968,774 (USA)

Technical Specs

Runtime:  | (extended edition)

Did You Know?

To give star Tom Hanks an idea of how a 12 year-old would behave, director Penny Marshall filmed each "grown-up" scene with David Moscow (Young Josh) playing Tom Hanks's part, who then copied David Moscow's behavior.

Plot holes: The morning after Josh gets "big", he tries to convince his mom that he is really her son. He tells her that his birthday is November 3. Later, we see a milk carton with a "missing" advert on the side about Josh, which says his birthday is 1st January.

Josh: What's this?
Scotty Brennen: Pay day.
Josh: [Opens up the envelope and looks at his check] A HUNDRED AND EIGHTY SEVEN DOLLARS?
Scotty Brennen: Yeah. They really screw you don't they?

User Review

This movie captures the innocence of youth beautifully

Rating: 10/10

I saw this film again yesterday for what must now be the tenth or so time and it's a film that makes me stop whatever I'm doing and immerse myself in the unfolding story. Never mind the fact that I am by now familiar with the premise, which incidentally far exceeds similar ones of the genre released at this time - Vice Versa and 18 Again (the latter being truly dire).

I think this is one of Hanks' finest hours and see it as the pinnacle of his early pre-90's career. His later performance in Philadelphia would eclipse this role, although this was obviously more serious in its message.

It takes real talent to act the young boy in the body of a thirty something and Hanks' copes admirably, from the comical leaping around the bedroom when he is trying to put on the jeans of the child on discovering his transformation to the child-like reaction displayed on Perkins' advances toward him. He captures the essence of youthful innocence both in the company of his younger peers and older 'work' colleagues.

Elizabeth Perkins complements the performance of Hanks' and it seems a shame that on searching the database that her career perhaps hasn't mirrored the success of Hanks' since making 'Big'.

I don't know why, but I always shed a tear at the end of the film. Perhaps it is the longing in all of us to want to return to the days of our youth and that we cannot turn back the clock as one can in the imaginary world of film.

As I grow older, and watch my children grow-up it makes me realise that time is a precious commodity and that life is a gift that should be cherished and nurtured carefully. This film somehow reinforces these feelings.


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