Big Trouble is a faintly remembered cinematic scud, a tossed-off never-was that disappeared quietly in spring 2002 after losing over $30 million at the box office. That makes sense in hindsight, even if there were times in American history when the sentence “Box office draw Tim Allen” made something like sense. This is mostly because it was savaged in reviews for being manic but unfunny, and underwent heavy revisions due to its plot
Its plot involved a nuclear weapon being smuggled onto an airplane, and its original release date was on September 21, 2001.
You see the major issue, but there was also this.
Jason Lee is cast as a vagrant who lives in a tree and devours Fritos in a shameless bout of product plugging.
That part seems pretty chill. Despite its failure, we should remember Big Trouble for its best moment and contribution to college football cinema: the running gag involving a Miami sports talk host calling out for any Florida fan to call in after a loss, and one lonely fan doing it, yet saying nothing whatsoever besides “well I’m here.”
There is so much deep accuracy here. There’s a Northeasterner who calls college football fans “morons” in this scene, doing so unironically even though they are in all likelihood a Jets or a Mets fan, and thus committed to a form of stupidity transcending even that of college football.
There’s the conversation, which if you logged enough time listening to local sports talk radio you have actually heard in real life. Not only is this one of the oldest and most obviously baited hooks in the history of sports talk radio, but it is also one of the most effective. It’s also geographically accurate— Miami football fans and hosts catering to them love to taunt Florida about things, usually just before or after the Canes lose to UVA or someone like that.*
*It’s hard to rebut! Their last win over Florida was a victory over Will Muschamp, and who achieved that besides Georgia Southern and a Mizzou team with seven first downs and 119 yards offense.
There’s Dennis Farina. That’s it, but it’s enough, because that’s Dennis Farina.
There is one inaccuracy: This shows Florida fans on a plane, “traveling to a game in numbers.” We don’t do that, both because a court order is a court order, and also because lately we’ve been able to drive to all our bowl games from home.