Ok, so Big Fan came out in ’09 I know, but I feel it’s appropriate to talk about because football is here! Ug, thank the Lord. I would rather watch a hobo take a dump than have to watch anymore regular season baseball. America’s favorite sport is back. Boom!
Patton Oswalt plays Paul Aufiero, who is, as the title of the movie suggests a big fan of the New York Giants. He’s also a big loser in his family’s eyes. Actually, in societal terms, he’s a really big fucking loser. He lives with his mother, has a shit job and has no girlfriend.
Tollbooth operator Paul sits in his cube and scribbles notes riddled with grammatical errors on how to burn his arch-nemesis “Philadelphia Phil” (Michael Rapaport) on a local sports radio talk show. The Giants, hatred for the Philadelphia Eagles, telling Phil how inferior the Eagles are and masturbation are his only passions in life. Much to his families chagrin, Paul is perfectly content.
Grabbing a slice of pizza, Paul and his oily sidekick Sal (Kevin Corrigan) spot their favorite Giants player Quantrell Bishop, played by Jonathon Hamm (not to be confused with Mad Men star and my make-believe boyfriend, Jon Hamm). Overwhelmed with excitement, the two buffoons decide to get in the car and follow Bishop and his entourage, which leads them to downtown Manhattan.
They end up at a glitzy night club and spot Bishop sitting with his homies in the VIP section. They combine enough of their crumpled dollars to send him a drink, hoping Bishop will happily wave them over. The opposite happens. After the waitress delivers Bishop the drink, he never even glances their way.
Bound and determined, the two bozos decide to go over and introduce themselves. After a bit of awkwardness they manage to squeeze into the convo. As the two gush over how much they love him, Paul accidentally reveals that they have been following them since Staten Island. Drunken Bishop does not like this at all and kicks the shit out of poor Paul.
After waking up from a coma, a bashed up Paul’s main concern is if the Giants won the game. They did not. Paul believes it’s because their star player, Bishop, is suspend for kicking the shit out of our protagonist. Being the big fan he is, Paul refuses to press charges. He tells the police he doesn’t remember what happened. He only wants Bishop to play and the Giants to win. This, of course, disappoints his family, and most of all, his lawyer brother.
As the film progresses, we see Paul depressed and defeated because the Giants are on a losing streak and his favorite player is suspended. Hell the poor guy is so distraught he can’t even rub one out. His depression worsens when he is humiliated on his beloved sports radio show. “Philadelphia Phil” does some research and figures out that Paul was the victim of the beating from Quantrell Bishop, who Paul constantly defends. Phil reveals this when they’re both on the air, which humiliates Paul. To add insult to injury, his mom picks up the phone and in a condescending tone tells him to keep it down.
Paul snaps and decides to head down to Philadelphia to confront Phil. Now, at this point of the movie you’re unsure of Paul’s mental health as he starts dressing in Philadelphia Eagle green. I’m sure the majority of you have seen the movie (it’s three years old), but for those of you who haven’t, I will not give away the ending.
Why this movie is awesome to watch right before Sunday fun-day: Paul doesn’t want a “normal” life. He doesn’t want money, he shows no interest in meeting a woman, he doesn’t enjoy his family and he could give two shits about his diet. The only thing that makes him happy is his favorite team, the New York Giants. Isn’t that what we all want? Kidding. I think we all enjoy money, sex, a good diet, family and hygienic friends. Watching Patton Oswalt deliver a dynamite performance and the dark humor delivered throughout the film makes for an enjoyable ninety minutes.
Watching your favorite football team week one is the best feeling ever! Even if they stink it up there is still optimism. It’s only week one, right? I’m a Buffalo Bills fan; I do this often. If you’re like me and plan on staying in Saturday night to save yourself for the glory that is football, Big Fan is on the free movie section on On Demand. Or you can just rent it. Hooray for football! Enjoy!
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