Big Nothing (2007) - Rotten Tomatoes

Big Nothing2007

Big Nothing (2007)



Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Big Nothing Photos

Movie Info

Director Jean-Baptiste Andrea's wicked, jet-black comic thriller Big Nothing stars Friends mainstay David Schwimmer as Charlie Wood, a onetime American professor now married to a policewoman, Penelope (Natascha McElhone) and living in Oregon. As the story opens, Charlie takes a job as a telephone operator at an Information Technology call support center, but is promptly fired for making offensive comments to a customer. One of Charlie's shadier co-workers, Gus Dickinson (Simon Pegg) wheedles him into his plan to blackmail a priest, Rev. Smalls (Mitchell Mullen) by using "inside" information from the company that demonstrates the minister's obsession with internet porn. Thus begins an endless series of Mametian twists and turns involving double-cross, mistaken identity, forced drownings, poisonings, infidelities and cold-blooded mariticide, as the men attempt to collect on the money but run head-first into one outrageous conflict after another. Alice Eve, Mimi Rogers and Jon Polito co-star; Andrea and William Asher co-authored the script.

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Alice Eve
as Josie McBroom
Jon Polito
as Agent Hymes
Natascha McElhone
as Penelope Wood
Mimi Rogers
as Mrs. Smalls
Billy Asher
as Dep. Garman
Mitchell Mullen
as Rev. Smalls
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Critic Reviews for Big Nothing

All Critics (14) | Top Critics (5)

The tone shift is a little too extreme for mainstream success, but Schwimmer and Pegg provide a solid, blackly comic centre to an original crime caper.

May 13, 2020 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…

It's not much good, though certainly not boring.

May 13, 2020 | Full Review…

Andrea simply doesn't have the comic nerve or timing to carry it off, and the look of his film is horribly drab - little wonder when most of it was shot in the Isle of Man and Wales, neither of them a convincing stand-in for Oregon.

May 13, 2020 | Full Review…

Andrea's maxed-out visual style is totally at odds with the basic material, which is actually a low-key character comedy. Despite some clever plot twists, wearying result feels as phony as Pegg's and McElhone's Yank accents.

February 23, 2012 | Full Review…
Top Critic

A screwball revision of Sam Raimi's 'A Simple Plan', which hobbles blindly through a minefield of genres with foolish, split-screen abandon.

November 16, 2011 | Full Review…

It's slightly clever from time to time, but it's pieced together in an entirely forgettable manner.

November 23, 2020 | Rating: 5/10 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Big Nothing


Well-acted with a driven, entertaining plot and just plain hilarious. I approve

Idrees Khan
Idrees Khan

Super Reviewer


Not that funny but was enjoyable.

Dead Angel
Dead Angel

Super Reviewer


Gets a lot into its 85 minutes, and the animation and split screens even work well to set the tone of a fast-moving novella on the screen. It's a thriller, a pretty original one, about 3 people in it together who have to admit they don't know each other at all but have linked their fates. Big Nothing would have been a league better if the writer-director stayed close to this theme, filling in the details of the plot from the first hour-- with the characters' taking in the gravity of their choices. The plot swings for the fences and then runs the bases carefully, keeping a feeling of plausible cause-and-effect until the last 20 minutes where the prospect of a second serial killer feels like a mangled O'Henry touch. This undercuts a thriller which had distinguished itself by balancing comedy and suspense exactly right, so you could believe what was happening in each category was not there for comic relief or to keep an audience from getting bored. The three leads are all good, and two have avoided big pitfalls. Schwimmer plays his role with agility to not sink like a sad sack, and Simon Pegg, with his hard-to-place American accent, seems like a familiar and unwicked type of person no matter how much his motives are revealed. For an English movie shot by a French director in Canada and Wales, the setting seems American enough, an updating of Jim Thompson's world to include most of a small town employed at a call center. And the characters here are all smarter than you would think if you tried to look at them only through the surroundings where each has immediately put themselves; this is also a very American thing that Brits don't usually get.

Adam Mahler
Adam Mahler

Super Reviewer

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