Big Fish: You Can Acheive Anything


Human beings have the ability to achieve anything. Once he or she has ambition, goals can be achieved even in the presence of obstacles. Therefore, there is no need to settle for mediocrity, because once the mind can perceive it, it can be achieved. Big Fish is about Edward’s stories, the message they portray, and how they affect the people around him.

The film Big Fish presents Edward Bloom as its main character. He is a man who tells a lot of dramatic, with a touch of fairy tale stories about his life; for every event in his life there is a story. Most of his stories portray him as an ambitious man that does not take no as an answer but is willing to do what it take to get what he wants. In one of his stories, he was the biggest thing around until a giant moved into town and started eating the sheep, chickens, and dogs because there is not enough for him to eat in such a small town and he is always so hungry. The other citizens were afraid to approach the giant except Edward, he convinced the giant to move to a bigger town because it is not that the giant is too big but the town is too small for him. Edward also decided to leave with the giant and at this point comparing the giant’s size to his ambition, by claiming that the town is too small for a man of his ambitions (Big Fish). He used this story to show magnitude of his ambition.

As Edward was leaving town with the giant he received a lot of advice, but there was one in particular that he held dearly and eventually applied to his life. This advice was given to him by a witch that he had mention in one of his earlier stories. She told him that, “the biggest fish in the ocean got that way by not getting caught” (Big Fish). Instead of taking the easy route to town Edward took the difficult one, while he told the giant take the easy one. He went through difficulties but was not dithered because he believes that with all these difficulties, there must be something pleasant on the other side. He got to Spectra, where everything seems perfect; lush green grass covered their thoroughfare and everyone is barefooted and all their shoe were tied on a string where no one could reach them, even, Norther Winslow, a poet from his very own hometown was there. Edward always thought Norther was somewhere in France, but it turns out he's been in Spectra all along. Edward shoe was stolen and thrown on the string in an effort to prevent him from leaving. No one else ever tried leaving, because to leave is a difficult while wearing shoe more over when one is barefooted. The citizens tried to convince Edward not to leave by telling him that the way to get back is going to be difficult without his shoe, he agrees that it will be painful but left anyway. Edward has big dreams, and aspires to be the biggest fish in the ocean, therefore he has to prevent himself from getting caught and by staying in Spectra he would have gotten caught like Winslow. Winslow who was a great poet could no longer write because there is not room for growth in Spectra, everything just stay the same. Notice that it was when Winslow left Spectra that he started to experience growth, so much so that he became one of the richest man.

In the story of how Edward met his wife, he arrived in Texas with the giant and while at a circus he saw a young lady by the name of Sandra for the first time. It was love at first sight and he knew within himself she was going to be his wife. He worked three years without pay just to find out who she was. It is understandable if he had worked those three years to convince her to marry him, but after he finds out who she is he has to get her to marry him. He did not even consider whether Sandra wants to marry him or not. With all the information in hand about her, he sets out to find her and have hand in marriage. Upon meeting Sandra and telling her of his undying love for her she tells him that she is engaged to be married, to a young man from his home town. First he was discouraged, but as he said, he is no reasonable man (Big Fish), because realistically speaking, a reasonable man would just walk away but he pursued her and they got married. The message that Edwards conveys in story is; when obstacles arises do not quit, instead find away to overcome these impediments.
The sad thing about Edward and his stories is that his stories eventually destroyed the relationship with his son William. William describes his relationship with his father as, “Strangers who know each other very well” (Big Fish). William grew up loving his dad’s stories, but as he got older he despised them, because he believes the stories are nothing but lies that his father tells, to hide who he really is. As a result, William did not talk to his dad for three years. As he struggled to separate the fact from the fiction, or the man from the myth (Big Fish), his wife encouraged him to go and talk to his dad. He ask his dad to tell him about the real him whether it is good or bad, but his dad insisted that his stories is who he really is. He later went to clean the pool and was startled when he saw what seems to be the fish from one of his dad’s story swimming in the pool. This motivated him to start looking into his dads past. The more information he receives the more he realizes that all his dad does is add information to his stories to make them interesting but he was not lying. Now, William has missed out on three years with his dad because he did not want to accept his father for who he really is and by the time he got back in his father’s life, his father was already dying.

Ironically, William was so much like his dad but did not recognize it. His dad confirmed this when he said that he and William are both story tellers but he speaks it while William writes it (Big Fish).William and his dad bonded, as he was asked to tell a story that his dad never told him, and he was able to do so making it as interesting as his father would. The story was about how his father died. At the end of the story his father said, “That’s exactly how it happened” (Big Fish). Even though Edwards’s stories have affected the relationship between he and son negatively, this portion of the movie also shows that his stories also help William to develop his story telling skills.

Big fish is more than about the stories, it is instead about the deep-seated messages that these stories have embedded in them. There are lessons that can be taking from these movies and apply to one’s daily life.

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