Patton Oswalt Big Fan Poster

Its always game day for Patton Oswalt in Big Fan

Big fan is not a big movie at all, in fact its even smaller in scope then writer/director Robert D. Siegel’s last film he wrote, The Wrestler.  But just like Paul Aufiero’s (Patton Oswalt) life, small in scope is what works for him.

Paul is probably one of the simplest characters ever seen in a movie, he’s a parking garage attendant and a New York Giants fan, that’s it.  He lives with his mother and is a frequent masturbator, that’s about as deep as Paul’s life is.  His love for the Giants makes up 100 percent of his daily thoughts and wants and goes deeper then you can imagine.  Kids, jobs, personal growth, relationships none of them matter more to him then the New York Giants.  He’d rather die then give up his love for The New York Giants.

That’s pretty much the movie in a nutshell.  Paul ends up seeing his favorite Giants quarterback Quantrell Bishop (played by arena football player Jonathan Hamm) at a gas station one night and ends up following him around New York until they end up at a strip club hours later.  To emphasis Paul’s lack of living they look at the clock (10:30PM) and think its far to late to be going out this late.  It’s like he has NO IDEA on the lifestyles multi millionaire football players live.  Once in the strip club, Paul and his buddy Sal (equally simple) do not care about the strippers and are more annoyed with them getting in the way of them ogling Bishop from afar.  Finally Paul works up the courage to approach his hero, and it starts off well enough (a fan meeting a star) then they mention how long they had been following Quantrell, not realizing that one of his stops was probably for drugs (again showing just how out of touch with real life they are).  In the confusion Bishop being a hot head, and not having any idea of Paul and Sal’s love for him beats the living shit out of Paul.

Paul wakes up a couple days later in a hospital with his rich and successful lawyer brother hot and heavy to milk Bishop for all the money his worth.  But Paul sees it differently.  The rest of the movie we see Paul struggle with probably severe brain damage and in trying to decide if he wants to put his hero in jail or not.  I do not want to say anymore because what he does is a surprise.

The movie is very minimalistic in its approach, trying to be a fly on the wall in Paul’s life.  Patton is on the screen 100% of the time, we do not see how this affects any other character other then Patton.  Nor do we really know anything about any other character except how they interact with Patton.  From his mother who’s given up on him long ago, to his brother and sister who just do not understand him, to Sal who is just another version of himself, to finally Paul’s arch nemesis Philadelphia Phil.  Philadelphia Phil is a caller into Paul’s favorite late night sports talk radio and Paul can’t stand him.  For all we know he could be just like Paul but for the Philadelphia Eagles instead.

For as basic as the movie sounds there is enough humor throughout and Patton’s memorizing performance as Paul to keep you interested for its short running time.  Director Robert D. Siegel obviously took some queues from Darren Aronofsky work on his previous script.  In fact these movies are very similar.  In the end I like Big Fan more, just because it’s more unique and fun even in all its bleakness.  Plus this is a character that you haven’t seen done a million times before, the last time I can think of would be Falling Down.

I also connected to this movie being that I’m an obsessed movie fan myself, though I realize that there is more to life beyond movies.  Patton admits to trolling internet movie geek boards such as AICN in order to prepare for this role.  If you have ever been called a geek or loser or told to get a life by anyone you know, give them this movie to watch to let them know that it could be a lot worse.

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About koutchboom


23 responses to “LETS GO PATTON! In Big Fan”

  1. Droid says :

    I thought you quit drinking?

  2. Droid says :

    Go nuts, mate. Have a good one.

    Hopefully I’ll be able to witness a foul mouthed tirade later on.

  3. Jarv says :

    If you’ve been off the pop for a week, you’ll be slaughtered by 7.

  4. Jarv says :

    On an entirely different note, this sounds really good and right up my alley.

    One question- if he’s that simple- how are we meant to tell he’s brain damaged?

  5. Chipps says :

    well written

  6. ThereWolf says :

    I’ve heard mention of Patton Oswalt but don’t know anything about him.

    Big Fan sounds all right though. I do like low-key – though you wouldn’t think so from me ‘Best Of’ list…

    • koutchboom says :

      He was the voice of Reny from that pixar Rat movie.

      Check him out in Sex and Death 101, his funniest role.

    • Tom_Bando says :

      He was also Neil Cumpsten on AICN, no joke, I remember when Drew got his underoos in a knot because Peter Travers outted Cumpsten in print. Well WAH there Drew. You don’t like secrets being given out etc-don’t do ‘script reviews’ 2 years before the movie gets released…hypocrite.


  7. koutchboom says :

    Also found out that the director of this used to be the head editor of The Onion…its funnier then anything I’ve ever seen on that site.

  8. ThereWolf says :

    Sex and Death 101 – I’ve just had a look at the trailer. Are you sure? I didn’t even crack a smile, but my eyes widened a bit at the sight of Winona Ryder…

    Oh, and The Onion is brilliant.

    • koutchboom says :

      Hmmmmmmm well if you don’t like funny movies then probably not. Its a silly sex comedy thats better then it has any right to be. Its written and directed by the guy that wrote Heathers.

      Maybe if you think the Onion is brilliant….you like that sort of humor, probably not the slapstick silly schtick.

      • ThereWolf says :

        I like funny movies.

        Humour is a strange thing. I fall about laughing every time I see This Is Spinal Tap, but a friend of mine doesn’t see what’s so funny. Alternatively, he can’t get enough of ‘American Pie’ type humour but I remain straight-faced throughout that kind of stuff.

        The Onion – “brilliant” might be a bit strong – it’s more I ‘appreciate’ the humour.

      • koutchboom says :

        Well if you liked Heathers you’ll like Sex and Death, lemme check the trailer to see if it does it justice. It seems like a stupid ROM COM but its a lot darker and funnier.

        Plus I’ve pretty much seen all of Patton’s stuff and thats his funniest performance.

      • koutchboom says :

        Just looking he wrote Demolition Man, and if you didn’t like that then theres just no pleasing you.

      • koutchboom says :

        Yeah that trailer makes it seem a lot lamer and cheesier then it is.

      • ThereWolf says :

        Yeh. Heathers & Demolition Man are fine by me.

        Big Fan & Sex And Death 101 now dutifully added to ‘See’ list. Cheers.

  9. Tom_Bando says :

    HAW reminds me of Barrel-Man (RIP) from Denver! Xiphos will know who I mean…

  10. jarv says :

    Heathers is brilliant

  11. ThereWolf says :

    Boom, do you recommend the ‘V For Vendetta’ graphic novel?

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