Pee-wee’s Big Adventure (1985) Tim Burton, Paul Reubens, Elizabeth Daily, Mark Holton

Pee-wee's Big Adventure (1985)
When eccentric man-child Pee-Wee Herman gets his beloved bike stolen in broad daylight, he sets out across the U.S. on the adventure of his life.

Director: Tim Burton
Cast: Paul Reubens, Elizabeth Daily, Mark Holton, Diane Salinger, Judd Omen, Irving Hellman, Monte Landis, Damon Martin, David Glasser, Gregory Brown, Mark Everett, Daryl Keith Roach, Bill Cable, Peter Looney, Starletta DuPois, Professor Toru Tanaka, Ed Herlihy, Ralph Seymour, Lou Cutell, Raymond Martino, Erica Yohn, Bill W. Richmond, Alice Nunn, Ed Griffith, Simmy Bow, Jon Harris, Carmen Filpi, Jan Hooks, John Moody, John O’Neill

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Okay, so it loses a bit of steam in the final third, but that’s true of most movies. It still rates a ten. The first film by Paul Ruebens, Tim Burton and the incomparable film composer Danny Elfman, it bubbles with the pure joy and exuberance of three talented people playing with a brand new toy. No film has ever been more fun to watch.

Reubens’ media crucifixion in the early 90’s was a crime against pop culture. America’s snickering sanctimony stifled and virtually silenced one of the few original voices in the entertainment industry. I’m only thankful that Pee-wee lives on in video-land, so that my children and I can continue to enjoy his film and television work (the new DVD of “Big Adventure”, by the way, is a treasure).

Pee-wee Herman, it’s time to come back! Your loyal fans await your triumphant return. And to all those sicko name-callers out there, we have only one thing to say:

“I know you are, but what am I?”
~ refill

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One of the oddest, funniest movies I’ve seen, “Pee Wee’s Big Adventure” is a hilarious first film from director Tim Burton. Working from a pretty simple concept; Pee-Wee, the strange main character, has his bike stolen and goes across the country to find it, the combination of Paul Rubens as Pee-Wee and the cartoon tone from director Tim Burton really takes the film far.

There is another element that makes the movie work, and that is simply a pure joy. The fun of having fun, and the endless energy that Rubens brings to the role of Pee Wee. He lives in a world all his own, and once he goes on the road to find his bike, he runs into strange truckers and other weird souls, but never loses his sense of humor. Burton never loses the tone, either. Rubens’s script provides the laughs, and Burton knows when to add a little touch of dark humor into the mix.

The final element that really helps the movie is Danny Elfman’s weird, bright, poppy score. Occasionally sounding like a loony march, the music helps the pace of the film, keeping it shooting forward to the next scene.

Occasionally, “Pee Wee’s Big Adventure” plays like a number of episodes with Pee Wee getting into trouble or meeting someone new, but Burton does manage to keep Pee Wee’s quest to get his bike back tying together all of the stories into one weird, wild thread. Certainly a comedy classic that’s going to be remembered for a long time.

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DVD9 | VIDEO_TS | NTSC | 16:9 | 720×480 | 5100 kbps | 5.3Gb
Audio: #1 English AC3 5.1 @ 386 Kbps, #2 French AC3 2.0 @ 192 Kbps | Subtitles: English, French
01:31:00 | USA | Adventure, Comedy, Family, Fantasy


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