Big Fat Liar Reviews
January 10, 2014
Another family B-movie that's non-Disney with its own wits and sillies. (B)
(Full review coming soon)
|Not Rotten Tomatoes||
August 6, 2014
A suprisingly decent family-film. Nothing too deep here, but hey... it's a popcorn family-film. Were you expecting more?
July 30, 2014
A fan of Frankie Muniz films as a kid, I figured it would be sensible to look back on it now to see if it still held up to today's standards.
The films that Frankie Muniz made in his heyday always had ridiculous premises about him going on massive adventures. This time it is a glamourous Hollywood fantasy involving him coming to blows with a Hollywood hotshot stealing his script to make it into a film. It doesn't take a genius to realise that the premise is ridiculous, but it does take a fan of Frankie Muniz films to find joy in watching Big Fat Liar. Luckily enough for me I was a pretty big fan of Malcolm in the Middle growing up and still enjoy looking back at the film. Although unfortunately as I pretty much expected, the quality of the film is no longer as good as if once ways in my eyes and now Big Fat Liar seems like a ridiculous childish adventure without much wit or originality.
The problem with Big Fat Liar is the fact that it relies too much on cliches. There are so many elements of the film that are clearly predictable that it is not hard to tell how the story will progress and where it will end, so instead viewers would be hoping for some entertainment in the comic gimmicks of the film. Here, the film is so ridiculously cheesy and child oriented that I honestly wonder if the filmmakers were really trying. If they were attempting to make a film which is unlikely to appeal to anyone outside the juvenile target audiences then they succeeded, but it is us as viewers who have to suffer as a result. There is little creativity in Big Fat Liar and it is way too familiar to have anything that makes it stand out from the crowd aside from the presence of popular child actors and some memorable imagery, ranging from big movie props to the fact that half the film has Paul Giamatti in makeup which renders his skin blue and his hair orange. Those images are easier to remember than any of the jokes in the film though, so despite the fact that the scenery of the film is good and helps to make the Hollywood setting of the story feel genuine, the colour palette of the film is not enough to make up for its lacklustre production elements in other areas.
There are times where Big Fat Liar feels like it could have been a self parody, particularly considering the fact that there were a few moments where what characters said proved to foreshadow later moments in the film. But instead of having any sort of satirical edge, Big Fat Liar proves to ignore its potential in parodying stereotypes and instead relies way too much on actually using them to tell the childish story and attempt to make jokes out of it. To simplify it, Big Fat Liar could have been a clever and half decent Hollywood satire, but since it relies too much on Hollywood cliches and generic story elements, it really does nothing to set itself apart from the countless amount of films which have a similar premise and tell the story better.
The cast of Big Fat Liar are the only consistent positive elements.
Frankie Muniz manages to put his natural young charismatic persona into the part. Fans of Malcolm in the Middle should enjoy his performance because he essentially plays out the same kind of archetype he is known for. He delivers his lines with a lot of confidence and energy and interacts with the surrounding cast as such which ensures that he has enough energy to carry the film from start to finish. As a Frankie Muniz star vehicle, Big Fat Liar manages to get a good performance out of him.
Amanda Bynes is ok. Although she is stuck with playing a generic female character and there are times where her performance gets really artificial, her energy is consistent and she manages to keep up with the story and the script well enough thanks to her juvenile charm. Frankie Muniz and Amanda Bynes make a good duo. Considering that the film kept them as friends instead of turning them into a romantic couple like most of the films usually do, Big Fat Liar is able to hold itself up without dissolving into tedious sentimentality and ridiculous teenage movie tropes. I know first hand that I hated when movies like this ended with a kiss between the main male and female characters, and so the fact that this time they remain nothing but friends manages to be good for the film.
Paul Giamatti is stuck with a script that isn't really that funny, but he gives an over the top performance which has him putting a lot of energy into his character during plenty of scenes. His performance demands different skills of him, and he manages to make a memorable effort simply because he gets the perfect egotistical nature and antagonistic persona for the part, so he is memorable for his appearance in Big Fat Liar.
The supporting performance of Donald Faison was hilarious considering how much success he later experienced on the comedy series Scrubs. I always thought he was funny in the part, and considering now that he portrayed my favourite character on Scrubs, it is a nice piece of nostalgia to look at him in Big Fat Liar and realise just who he was the whole time.
John Cho's cameo was a decent touch as well.
So Big Fat Liar has the ability to appeal to juveniles as a star vehicle for Frankie Muniz and for featuring a performance by Amanda Bynes, but the fact that it resorts to nothing but a cliche ridden script featuring stereotypical and predictable plot elements makes it harder to admire after having grown up and learned to appreciate what a truly good comedy film is actually made of.
June 5, 2011
Just a dumb fun movie.
June 2, 2014
Funny and charming, Big Fat Liar is a fun adventure film.
May 28, 2014
Mainly for kids, but has this charm to it that keeps me watching it every now and then.
March 10, 2010
I had fun with Big Far Lair.
February 12, 2010
An amusing family comedy. I've never really been a fan of Frankie Muniz, but it is Paul Giamatti who makes it worthwhile anyways. Sometimes it really is the villain who establishes the movie and gives it an identity. (First viewing - Spring 2002 in theaters)
March 7, 2014
The movie feels like that paper stolen by Marty Wolf; overconfident, tasteless, and most importantly: written by a kid. The whole movie doesn't feel worth watching because you already know how it's going to end: he'll get credit for the paper, and "The Big Bad Wolf" will be discredited. I don't even feel like I have to check the spoilers box because that would defeat the purpose of what I'm trying to say, as the ending is incredibly obvious.
March 5, 2014
Paul Giamatti is genius in this movie. Anyone that takes this thing seriously is an idiot. This movie is the BOMB
January 12, 2014
A harmless comedy where Paul Giamatti steals the show as a jerk Hollywood producer.
January 1, 2012
Better than expected... Paul Giamatti is hilarious!
January 3, 2014
Is it silly and stupid? Definitely, but it's also insanely fun. Amanda Bynes and Frankie Muniz are great, and Paul Giamatti is superb as the sleazy villain. He is a real Grade A actor, and even though he is in a pure kids film he still gives it his all and is clearly having an insane amount of fun playing the villain role. He gets mad props from me. The film also has some great scenes deep inside Universal Studios Hollywood and in Hollywood itself. For any kid, it's a dream come true. I grew up with this film, and have seen it literally countless amounts of times and yet it is still every bit as fun as when I first saw it. It was also the film that first introduced me to the great Paul Giamatti. Dan Schneider of Drake and Josh, Good Burger, Keenan and Kel, The Amanda Show, and All That fame writes the script and it certainly isn't great, but it fits the bill for kiddie fare (it's very cute, a bit clever, and quite funny). While the film certainly isn't aimed at adults it's still cute, charming and innocent, not to mention it's tons of crazy fun making this film one the whole family would likely enjoy. I know I continue to re-watch it every chance I get (not to mention it always leaves me insanely happy). I love it.
January 2, 2014
Needed little more (04, 13) OWN DVD
December 21, 2013
As a small child, there was a movie I remember enjoying. Many movies in fact. But I just got done revisiting one, and I felt like talking about it. And it's always weird seeing movies you saw as a child. What was once images and sounds are now a story. Okay, I wasn't that young when I saw it, but it was a point where I didn't fully get things. But I recently saw it again, and I was pleasantly surprised. Other people don't like this movie a lot, so maybe it's nostalgia. But it's a family movie, it's aged, it has problems. I don't know what the hell Frankie Muniz is doing, Paul Giamatti (who's still probably in my top ten actors list) is going to be in the new Spiderman movie, and Amanda Bynes has become one of those celebrities that's held onto being famous by being a retard on Twitter. Ah, reality. Anyway, to get the acting out of the way, I thought it was good. Paul Giamatti looks like he's having fun, and plays a family movie dickhead better than a lot of other people could. Amanda Bynes plays female friend well enough, and Frankie Muniz is actually pretty good. Side characters really are pushing that cheesy level a lot, and that's bad enough with how already cheesy it is. But maybe a quick synopsis could help. Frankie Muniz is a liar (unfortunately he is neither fat, nor big, which would have been hilarious) But he ditches out on his final paper of writing a story to play video games or some shit. (He's lazy basically) And so he made a big lie, then it blew up in his face, and now he's in summer school, and worse his father lost trust in him. Now he has to rewrite the paper. And apparently he's such a good liar, he's a good storyteller, and so he writes some great story. But along the way to school he slams into the limo of Hollywood producer Marty Wolf. And basically he accidentally gets the script, and decides to keep it for a movie while Muniz looks even more lazy. So now Frankie Muniz must go across the country with Amanda Bynes Home Alone style, but he has to prove he's not lying. Thankfully he's clever and sarcastic enough to ruin Giamatti's career, and do all these other things that are unrealistic but could sort of happen in a Home Alone way. But this is one of the movies that I think I liked the first half a lot better than the second. Maybe it was because as a child I watched the first half a lot more than the second. That and I liked him riding his skateboard and being a suburban kid, and the Hollywood thing was kind of the exact opposite. But that one area they lived in, that pretty cool. Plus the old music, it felt early 2000s again, if not late nineties. Also, I thought this movie was catering to all ages. There were really childish kid parts, and if I watched in the theater I could just feel the cheese coming out of it. Then the main characters are pre-teen, and usually the main characters ages are who relates to the movie the most. And then their were movie references and Hollywood jokes I think only adults could really grasp. But if I could say who it was catering to the most, probably the Nickelodeon audience. But it is still enjoyable for adults... or for teenagers who watched it a lot as a kid like myself! But it's a harmless movie, and it has its own uniqueness in areas. It's good for others, great for me for nostalgia only. That and I thought it was clever enough at parts.
December 19, 2013
Okay, it's not REALLY a 4.5 movie. It's kind of a trash, but this movie is so funny, even if it's childish. And I still think Paul Giamatti did a good job.
June 19, 2013
Paul Giamatti provides all the film's humour and best bits. The only real reason worth watching to be brutally honest.
November 29, 2013
i like it those kids like pulling off stunts and pranks how bout this big fat wolf
August 12, 2012
Even though it has a funny performance from Paul Giamatti, Big Fat Liar is just another kiddie movie that was not made for adults.
October 17, 2013
Amanda Bynes when she was still sane. *sigh* Okay, this film is okay... if it wasn't for its smart acting and charm, the film would have turned into an ultimate disaster because of its unconvincing plot line and jokes.