The Big Year

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Brad Harris (Jack Black) seems to be a burnout in a dead–end job, but he has one dream in life: to spot more species of birds in North America in a single year than have ever been seen. Setting his sights on the reigning champion, Kenny Bostick (Owen Wilson), he puts his life – and his reputation with his father (Brian Dennehy) — on hold to fulfill his dream, not knowing he will have fierce competition from Bostick himself, and another newcomer (Steve Martin).

ClearPlay In Action!

The Big Year received a PG rating, fairly tame by Jack Black standards. ClearPlay cuts about 30+ pieces of language. Also trimmed are scenes alluding to vomiting, infidelity and infertility. Most members of the family should appreciate the characters’ quest for excellence, and there’s some nice scenery as well.

Does The Big Year soar, or is it simply for the birds?…

The biggest problem with The Big Year is setting up audience expectations for an uproarious comedy by casting Black, Martin and Wilson. There may be a couple of chuckles, but funny it isn’t. Instead, it’s a nice, pleasant film with characters you may care for, exploring a topic rarely seen in the movies: birdwatching. The characters’ dreams are infectious, and the movie is enjoyable.

Marty Nabhan—ClearPlay Birder

Rated PG for language and some sensuality; 100 min; Directed by David Frankel
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