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"THE BIG YEAR"
(2011) (Steve Martin, Owen Wilson) (PG)


Alcohol/Drugs Heavy
Blood/Gross Stuff Moderate
Disrespectful/Bad Attitude Heavy
Frightening/Tense Scenes Mild
Gun/Weapons Minor
Imitative Behavior Extreme
Jump Scenes Mild
Music (Scary/Tense) Minor
Music (Inappropriate) None
Profanity Moderate
Sex/Nudity Moderate
Smoking None
Tense Family Scenes Heavy
Topics to Talk About Heavy
Violence Mild


QUICK TAKE:
Comedy: Risking work commitments and personal relationships, three men compete to view and catalog the most species of birds in a calendar year.
PLOT:
The story follows three competing bird watchers who have each committed to a "Big Year," in which they try and spot and catalog as many rare bird sightings as possible. Stu (STEVE MARTIN) is a business executive who has always wanted to pursue a Big Year as a passion project. Brad (JACK BLACK) is a thirty-something divorcee who finds himself wandering in life, but knows every bird call and wants to break the world record for bird sightings in one year. Bostick (OWEN WILSON) is the cocky current world-record holder who wants to retain his legacy at all costs.

Stu has the support of his wife, Edith (JOBETH WILLIAMS). Brad, meanwhile, has the support of his travel-agent mother, Brenda (DIANNE WIEST), but not his retired father, Raymond (BRIAN DENNEHY), who thinks his son has no direction or real ambition in life. Bostick, meanwhile, has already had one marriage fail due to his globe-trekking Big Year pursuits. His current wife, Jessica (ROSAMUND PIKE), wants only for him to stay home so they can start a family. She has even begun fertility treatments, but Bostick proves time and again that he is willing to leave her the second he hears of a rare bird sighting.

It soon becomes a three-way race for the world record. Brad briefly strikes up a flirtation with Ellie (RASHIDA JONES), who shares his passion for bird watching and bird calls. Stu, meanwhile, has to deal with his fellow executives Barry and Jim (JOEL McHALE and KEVIN POLLAK) who can't close a major acquisition without him. Stu puts pressure on both with his single-minded pursuit of a new world record even as his marriage falls apart.

WILL KIDS WANT TO SEE IT?
Teens may have some interest, especially if they are fans of Jack Black, anyone else in the cast, or bird watching.
WHY THE MPAA RATED IT: PG
For language and some sensuality.


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