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Big Top Pee-Wee (1988)

Paul Reubens , Penelope Ann Miller , Randal Kleiser  |  PG |  DVD
3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (81 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Paul Reubens, Penelope Ann Miller, Kris Kristofferson, Valeria Golino, Wayne White
  • Directors: Randal Kleiser
  • Writers: Paul Reubens, George McGrath
  • Producers: Paul Reubens, Debra Hill, Richard Gilbert Abramson, William E. McEuen
  • Format: Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, Subtitled, Widescreen, NTSC
  • Language: English, French
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.77:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: PG (Parental Guidance Suggested)
  • Studio: Paramount
  • DVD Release Date: July 6, 2004
  • Run Time: 86 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (81 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000228ECM
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #83,564 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Big Top Pee-Wee" on IMDb

Special Features


Editorial Reviews

There's nothing wrong with Randall Kleiser's Big Top Pee-Wee that Pee-Wee's Big Adventure director Tim Burton wouldn't be able to fix. Take the scene in which entwined farmer and botanist Pee-Wee and ravishing circus performer Gina (Valeria Golina) blissfully ponder the shapes of the clouds. One can only imagine the wondrous forms Burton would have animated in the heavens. In Kleiser's sequel, they are mere cumulus. A talking pig and a sympathetic gallery of outcast circus performers (including a young Benicio Del Toro as the Dog-Faced Boy) notwithstanding, Big Top squanders much of the first film's magic and goodwill. Blame it on the script, which places arrested adolescent Pee-Wee in a small town that is unaccountably hostile to him. Blame it on Paul Rubens, who, perhaps rebelling against his own iconic creation, puts Pee-Wee in some disquieting libido-fueled situations, such as jumping his schoolteacher girlfriend Winnie (Penelope Ann Miller). "The children," Winnie fights him off as her class looks on. Indeed. --Donald Liebenson

Product Description

When a storm blows an entire circus into farmer Pee Wee's yard, he finds an important use for his secret botanical experiments, and falls in love.
Genre: Feature Film-Comedy
Rating: PG
Release Date: 9-AUG-2005
Media Type: DVD

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
16 of 19 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars pee wee's first major dissapointment May 30, 2007
paul reubens character was one of the greatest comedic events of our time.. From the early variety show, to the playhouse, to the big adventure - pee wee could not lose.. I remember seeing big top pee wee in the theatre - and feeling very dissapointed with a movie that was just not very fun or interesting.. Whereas 'pee wee's big adventure' explored more of pee wees quirkiness (remember the scene with the tape in the bathroom) 'big top pee wee' tried to take the character move him to a different setting and make a sort of romantic comedy.. This is probably where it all falls apart.. pee wee should not be a romantic figure - he is the opposite.. he is best when he remains a sort of neuter or man child.. the second romance enters the picture.. pee wee loses all of his charm and comedy.. there are a few funny moments in big top pee wee but on the whole it falls flat.
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9 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Lighten Up! January 29, 2004
Format:VHS Tape|Verified Purchase
Granted, Big Top Pee Wee does not promise the type of guffaw humor we enjoyed in Pee-Wee's Big Adventure, but it is a really good movie. The humor is a bit more mature. This might be considered a weakness of the film on the surface. It is the immaturity of the humor that we loved so much in Big Adventure. However, having been of the target age when Big Adventure and subsequently Big Top came out, as I grew up, so did Pee-Wee.
My favorite is still the opening dream-sequence in which Pee-Wee is incognito, dressed as Abraham Lincoln to avoid his inexplicably large group of post-adolescent female fans who are waiting for him outside of the venue in which he performed his trapeze act. One fan, unaffected by the fact that a man who had been dead for almost a hundred years at that point, breathlessly asks for "Lincoln's" autograph, professing "I'm such a big fan!" Pee-Wee's phony Lincoln beard is then ripped off and the girls shriek with delight and chase after him.
This opening sequence, though not the only highlight of this campy delight, truly captures the essence of Pee-Wee humor. It is above all bizarre. But the uniqueness of Pee-Wee's world is its ability to transcend time, dimension, and most of all, logic. This was true in Pee-Wee's Playhouse and Big Adventure, but I think Big Top captures this most.
The common dream sequence as an opening scene to each movie sets the tone for each movie. When comparing the two, the dream sequence that opens Big Adventure pales in comparison. Big Top maintains the surrealistic tone of the Lincoln scene throughout the film. The circus owner's wife, Midge Montana is just a few inches tall. Innuendoes between her and her husband set the imagination free.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Big Top Loser December 22, 2011
By Guitaro
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
I can't believe this unfunny awful movie compared to PWs Big Adventure. It's like watching Aliens then Alien 3.

It's like what just happened??
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Decent Sequel January 15, 2007
By M. Cole
Okay so it isn't as innocent and charming as Pee-Wee's Big Adventure but Big Top still has a place in my heart. The movie isn't really a sequel, it has none of the same characters as Big Adventure just Pee-Wee living the life of a farmer in a small town. The story depicts Pee-Wee as the town idiot in the eyes of all the other elderly citizens. With the help of a hot dog tree the story plays out and is sure to leave a smile on your face. May I also say the scene of Pee-Wee and Gina and the depiction of their actions with (fireworks, mud wrestling, and a train) may be one of the finest scenes of cinematogrophy ever* please do not watch this movie expecting the charm of Big Adventure, if you like Pee-Wee and a good comedy this may be worth a peek.
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7 of 10 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Big Top Pee-wee fails to continue where Burton left off December 27, 1998
By A Customer
Format:VHS Tape
The setting for the story is in a small western town apparently in the middle of no where. Pee-wee is engaged to a beautiful school teacher by the name of Winnie. One day a tornado hits the town. When Pee-wee comes out of his house he finds a circus has landed in his front yard. Being the kind fellow that Pee-wee usually is, he invites them to stay. One of the main problems with this movie is that all the characters are so flat, boring, and unoriginal that you just want to drop a nuke to kill the whole bunch of them. Although Pee-wee does a fairly good job at acting in this movie, the director is unaware of Pee-wee's weaknesses and puts him in situations that stretch his limits to far. Pee-wee is supposed to be childish and lovable. However in this movie his hormones are raging and he cheats on his fiance. The worst part of this movie is by far the ending. Montana (the circus master) states that he has come up with a new idea for the circus that will shock the world with its innovative and cutting edge design. His new idea is to replace the circus with a spicy little number he calls the American Farm Circus. This "great" idea turns out to be one of the lamest scenes ever to come out of Hollywood. This movie is worse than bad. It is in the range of "Leprauchan 4: in space" and "Dune." I would strongly recommend not renting this movie. However, if you ignore my advice then may god have mercy on your soul.
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9 of 13 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Pee-wee's Worst, if not Weirdest Movie April 28, 1999
By A Customer
Format:VHS Tape
Incredibly bad follow-up to the classic Pee-wee's Big Adventure is unfunny and bizarre. Randal Kleiser, the director of such films of Grease and The Blue Lagoon, flubs up Pee-wee's second and ultimately last feature. The movie starts off OK, with Pee-wee hamming it up as a Frank Sinatraesque crooner but then goes down hill from there. Movie somewhat redeems itself with the longest screen kiss in movie history but then finally hits rock bottom. The ending is horrible, and leaves a feeling of insecurity and confusion. When I first got this movie, I was expecting a funny movie, what I got was an overly bland mess of a movie. It still is interesting to watch but doesn't leave a feeling of satisfaction. When Pee-wee's room isn't even a little bit unique, you know there's something wrong.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
good, but not as good as the big adventure
Published 3 days ago by Jon Drake
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Great purchase!
Published 4 days ago by George F.
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Classic Love! :)
Published 23 days ago by Jennie
5.0 out of 5 stars Paul Rubens is so very funny.
The movie is hilarious and keeps the Grandkids' attention. Paul Rubens is so very funny.
Published 1 month ago by A Patriot
5.0 out of 5 stars A classic of silliness
my kids love this movie, i still enjoy it.. who cares what Paul did in his private life he was funny and made fun movies...
Published 3 months ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars YAY!
I love this movie so much, I got it within great time frame and it works great! PeeWee is the best!
Published 4 months ago by Phaedralabh
5.0 out of 5 stars no complaints
the movie came very quickly with no problems. also, love the movie! and the price was right. bought a 2nd one as a gift
Published 4 months ago by Tony Matracia
5.0 out of 5 stars A favorite of mine growing up that I can now share with my children!
Who doesn't love Pee Wee!?!?!?! Look Vance, The Calalilies are in bloom again! hahahaha Just a really fun movie! YAY!
Published 5 months ago by April Griffeth
4.0 out of 5 stars ok for sequel
kids enjoyed it, not as funny as the first but still some really crack up moments. packing was excellent too
Published 7 months ago by Susan M Harlec
4.0 out of 5 stars Not as good as the first, but (believe it or not) gives Pee-Wee more...
First off, if you're considering watching this movie, make sure you've already seen Pee-Wee's Big Adventure.
Go ahead, I'll wait.
Done? Keen. Read more
Published 8 months ago by Andrew R. Lazo
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