Big Bully

MPAA Rating: PG

Entertainment: +2

Content: -1 1/2

Young Roscoe Bigger delights in picking on meek, frail David Leary at Hastings Middle School in Minnesota. But David devises a scheme to get Roscoe sent to reform school, and David and his family move on to California. David grows up to be a successful author and eventually returns to his old middle school to teach creative writing. To his surprise and dismay, he runs into his old bully buddy, Roscoe, who now teaches in the wood working shop. Roscoe again takes after David with a vengeance, but David fights back with all his might. All this leads to lots of comical, but frequently vicious, confrontations between David (Rick Moranis) and Roscoe (Tom Arnold). BIG BULLY is billed as a comedy, but it turns into a rather dark psychodrama as Roscoe tries to take his revenge on David. It does have some laughs along the way, but it's just too intense to be very much fun.

Oddly enough, Ben and Kirby, who are the young sons of David and Roscoe, respectively, get to be good friends even though Ben at first bullies Kirby. It is their friendship which offers the only hope for David and Roscoe to be reconciled. This is the most redeeming value in the film and softens the film's belligerent confrontations. David is divorced, but is a loving, caring father to a bitter, rebellious Ben. Even though Roscoe is a tough taskmaster in his family, he is kind and considerate to the sensitive, gentle Kirby. Unfortunately, though, the dialogue contains a number of crude words, and the young boys themselves speak several obscenities. They also make a few crude suggestive remarks about girls and sex. So, Hollywood has added enough offensive elements to this PG film to put it off limits for good family viewing.

Preview Reviewer: John Evans
Warner Brothers, 4000 Warner Blvd., Burbank, CA 91522

The following categories contain objective listings of film content which contribute to the subjective numeric Content ratings posted to the left and on the Home page.

Crude Language: Many (12) times - Mild 10, Moderate 2

Obscene Language: Several (7) times - S-word 4, other 3

Profanity: None

Violence: Many times - Moderate (striking, beating, rough treatment, hitting in genitals, nails shot at man, student threatened with grinding machine, chase threats)

Sex: Implied once between married couple

Nudity: None

Sexual Dialogue/Gesture: Few times (boys refer to sex and girl's anatomy in crude manner)

Drugs: Once (drinking in bar)

Other: Slang term used for urination

Running Time: Unknown
Intended Audience: Ages 6 through 16

Click HERE for a PRINTER-FRIENDLY version of this review.