Big Wednesday (1978)


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Movie Info

Jan-Michael Vincent plays a self-destructive beach bum to whom surfing is a Zen experience. We first meet Vincent in the devil-may-care 1960s, in the company of his carefree buddies William Katt and Gary Busey. The boys reunite ten years later, after one has served time in Vietnam. The beach is still there, the waves still break upon the shore, and towards the end of the film, the characters become people that we truly care about. Barbara Hale, the real-life mother of costar William Katt, makes … More

Rating: PG
Genre: Drama, Comedy
Directed By:
Written By: John Milius, Dennis Aaberg
In Theaters:
On DVD: Jul 9, 2002
Warner Home Video


as Leroy Smith

as Matt Johnson

as Jack Barlow

as Peggy Gordon

as Mrs. Barlow

as Lucy

as Enforcer

as Himself

as Shopping Cart

as Psychologist

as Sally's Husband

as Ostrich

as Sergeant

as Tall Kid

as Party Girl #2

as Party Girl #7

as Surfer #3

as Surfer #5

as Old Woman

as Minister

as Bride of the Bear

as Panhead

as Boggie
Show More Cast

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Critic Reviews for Big Wednesday

All Critics (14) | Top Critics (4)

Full Review… | March 26, 2009
Top Critic

Full Review… | February 9, 2006
Time Out
Top Critic

Full Review… | May 9, 2005
New York Times
Top Critic

Full Review… | January 1, 2000
Chicago Reader
Top Critic

[VIDEO ESSAY] Milius constantly revisits the ocean's churning surf as a literal and metaphoric yardstick to underscore the movie's themes of personal responsibility, loyalty, and the pressures of unpredictable social change.

Full Review… | February 9, 2014

Remains noteworthy as a cult film.

Full Review… | July 14, 2011
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