Film #81: PEE WEE'S BIG HOLIDAY
Pee Wee’s Big Holiday
2 out of 5 stars
Director John Lee (WONDER SHOWZEN, BROAD CITY) directs what is essentially a resurrection of Pee Wee Herman’s career. The film – essentially a cross-country road picture VERY similar to PEE WEE’S BIG ADVENTURE in tone – is a mixed bag that veers between wildly creative set pieces and scenes that really only hammer the same joke over and over. Through it all, Pee Wee (Paul Ruebens) plays a character he knows completely - from loafers to close-cropped hair. It’s just that, well, the whole thing probably would have been more relevant twenty years ago. Still… the character retains its charm and the narrative moves along swiftly, so the viewer never finds himself bored. Look for a host of cameo appearances as well as some nods to previous outings by Pee Wee. All in all, BIG HOLIDAY is sort of enjoyable, but it also fails to do anything new with the character or the premise. Pee Wee is Pee Wee and the story of a boy on a mission to a) find his bike and/or b) get to a friend’s birthday party just isn’t as fresh as it once was… and neither is the actor. In a word, Rueben’s looks old. Like really old. Like far too old to be dusting off a thirty year old character for anything other than a money grab. Still… if you love Pee Wee and the films/TV shows he’s done previously, you’ll no doubt love this. But, if you’re looking for something more to be done with the character, you’ll leave BIG HOLIDAY feeling just slightly disappointed.