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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brutal
This is excellent entertainment. An unemployed, ex-con, ex-miner is given an opportunity to bare-knuckle fight for money. The film was shot in and around Coalburn in Scotland and uses very authentic accents and local vernacular. Coalburn was chosen for its grim countryside and rusting relics of the mining industry. The miners' strike of '84 is used in the film almost as a...
Published on 1 Mar 2011 by G. O'Neill

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars The Big Man
Liam Neeson is on form in this gritty tale of a man forced to become a fighter to try to make some money. In doing so he finds himself in thrall to some very shady and powerful people. Worth a look.
Published on 8 April 2011 by Robert Wilson


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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brutal, 1 Mar 2011
By 
G. O'Neill (Qatar) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Big Man [DVD] (DVD)
This is excellent entertainment. An unemployed, ex-con, ex-miner is given an opportunity to bare-knuckle fight for money. The film was shot in and around Coalburn in Scotland and uses very authentic accents and local vernacular. Coalburn was chosen for its grim countryside and rusting relics of the mining industry. The miners' strike of '84 is used in the film almost as a character in its own right. It sets a backdrop of sheer hopelessness to all of the characters. Neeson gives an outstanding early performance. The story evolves at a quick enough pace. Humour is used to punctuate the gloom. Billy Connolly is the house clown and delivers well. There is a scene in a bar where Neeson gets talking to a fellow drinker about the achievements of the Scottish race. It is simple, not over-clever and hilarious. The bare knuckle fight is stomach churning. The sound effects are cringingly realistic and it is not for the squeamish. I didnt get the ending. I am sure some deep, meaningful point was being made. I just didnt get it.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A bare knuckle movie, 22 Jan 2011
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LXIX (scotland) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Big Man [DVD] (DVD)
Set against the backdrop of Thatcher's deindustrialisation policies on a small mining village near Glasgow, The Big Man dramatises the loss of working class pride and illustrates how socio-political forces led many into desperation as the economy was shifted from manufacturing and heavy industry into service industries. Liam Neeson stars as Danny Soular, a former miner with a wife, two children and a criminal record for police assault during the Miners' Strike of 1984/1985. Relegated to the role of househusband, he seeks solace and financial enlightenment in the things that got him thus far in life - his hands. Cajoled into taking part in an illegal bare knuckle fight he loses his wife and children as he embarks on a rigorous training regime with his boyhood friend (played by Billy Connolly) who is now a runner for a notorious Glasgow crime lord with a big coat and a veneer of respectability (Ian Bannen).

The Big Man is notable for its particularly long fight scene in which there are eventually no holds barred. Brutal? Yes. Disturbing? Perhaps, but not unexpectedly so in a film of this ilk. The narrative also flirts frequently to Spain, where a mysterious, lobster-pink Costa criminal appears to spend all day lounging in his pool on a lilo. His role is ultimately revealed as the plot gradually unravels.

The Big Man combines tragedy, comedy and drama and captures a sense of loss in working class masculinity that occurred in Scotland in the 1980's. Several other notable characters are featured here including a young Hugh Grant and even the legendary Glasgow socialite, Tommy Moore.

To this day, Britain does not manufacture goods on the same scale and some people made unemployed at this time never actually found work again. The Big Man therefore captures the angst of the disenfranchised working class man and dramatises this through a gritty tale of 111 minutes of desperation and a subtle search for meaning.

Recommended viewing. There are no extras on the DVD. Note that, like the backdrop, some of the language used is industrial.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing, 19 April 2013
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Mr. John Maslen (High Wycombe) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Big Man [DVD] (DVD)
Expected much more from this film as it has good reviews and Liam Neeson in it - but am afraid its so far fetched I couldn't take it seriously - bordering on ridiculous at times
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars The Big Man, 8 April 2011
By 
Robert Wilson (Scotland) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Big Man [DVD] (DVD)
Liam Neeson is on form in this gritty tale of a man forced to become a fighter to try to make some money. In doing so he finds himself in thrall to some very shady and powerful people. Worth a look.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Bold but bizarre., 10 Jun 2013
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This review is from: The Big Man [DVD] (DVD)
A very interesting film but not without flaws. What I liked is that it didn't go where I thought it would. The score is beautiful. Ennio Moriccone just gives it a classic timeless quality. The performances are good, just the script is a bit all over the place. The fight is very good, very real and very brutal, again very unexpected. A decent watch for anyone interested in bare knuckle fighting.
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5.0 out of 5 stars The Big Man, 9 Sep 2009
This review is from: The Big Man [DVD] (DVD)
Have tried to get this on video or DVD for some tiime and was pleased to see it now available. An excellent watch.
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2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Oldie but Goodie, 29 April 2009
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G. Coates "Gee Cee" (Co. Durham , U.K.) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Big Man [DVD] (DVD)
I was recommended this film by someone at work who said the main fight scene was the best they had ever seen and i must admit it didn't dissapoint. It was also a great story which grips you from the start and just gets better and better. I would highly recommend this film and it's definately in my top ten favourites.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars THE BIG MAN DVD, 22 Oct 2011
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J. Mooney (NORTHERN IRELAND) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Big Man [DVD] (DVD)
This film is dated, not the type of film that I enjoy.
Liam Neeson has better movies out than this one.
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1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars great potential but overplayed, 12 May 2009
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This review is from: The Big Man [DVD] (DVD)
A line-up of well-known actors but a shabby script. The much vaunted fight scene was the usual filmic unreality. The ending is unresolved.
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