Big Trouble offers huge cast and huge laughs

The release of Big Trouble was delayed after 9/11 because the film depicts careless breeches of airport security. Finally seeing the light of day, this production is sure to help many of us forget our woes.

Under the direction of the acclaimed Barry Sonnenfeld (Men in Black, Get Shorty), Big Trouble is the surprise hit of 2002. This deliciously amusing film chucks an astounding 14 characters together for a brief 85 minutes.

Based on the novel of the same name by Dave Barry, it seems that everyone is in Big Trouble in this film. Eliot (Tim Allen) is a recently divorced, failed newspaper columnist. He’s gone solo as an ad exec who is trying to earn the respect of his teenage son, Matt. Matt and his pal Andrew are playing Kill, a school game that requires them to surreptitiously squirt a member of their class with a water gun. Boys will be boys, right? So Matt and Andrew sneak into the home of the unhappily married Arthur (Stanley Tucci) and Anne Herk (Rene Russo) in order to squirt their daughter Jessie, the class hottie.

Meanwhile, Arthur, the pompous husband, is marked for dead as his own company has ordered a hit on him. But the attempt of the two assassins (Dennis Farina and Johnny Knoxville) is hindered by the kids’ game. Enter the police – the wise-cracking Monica (Janeane Garofalo) and the incompetent Walter (Patrick Warburton). Eliot, of course, shows up at the Herk home to bail his son out of trouble, and meets the beautiful Anne. The two become smitten as do their children.

Anne’s arrogant husband then attempts to purchase a suitcase containing a bomb (which resembles a garbage disposal), from two Russian “barkeepers,” but the bar is robbed. Then, just for kicks, toss two FBI agents (Heavy D and Omar Epps), a couple of goats, a dog running around with Martha Stewart’s face and a hallucinogenic toad into this chaotic scene.

And there you have Big Trouble. Did you follow all of that? I didn’t think so. Admit it – you’re fascinated.

Sonnenfeld and Barry take this multitude of characters and story lines and brilliantly unite them under the single thread of the encumbered suitcase against the sole backdrop of the city of Miami. This complicated production came across seamlessly, and the outrageous scenarios make for a hilarious film. Come prepared to hold your gut all the way through.
-Big Trouble is in theaters April 5.

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