- Rated: R
- Run Time: 1 hours, 50 minutes
- Video: Color
- Released: September 24, 2002
- Originally Released: 2002
- Label: MGM (Video & DVD)
- Encoding: Region 1 (USA & Canada)
- Packaging: Keep Case
- Single Side - Dual Layer
- Aspect Ratio: Anamorphic Widescreen - 2.35
- Aspect Ratio: Full Frame - 1.33
- Aspect Ratio: Letterbox - 1.85
- Dolby Digital 5.1 - English
Performers, Cast and Crew:
Hollywood Reporter - 02/25/2002
"...A smashing directorial debut....The film is blazingly alive and admirable on many levels..."
Los Angeles Times - 03/08/2002
"...Shot through with beauty, pain and humor...[A] complex and intimate film....BIG BAD LOVE is brave and admirable for the trust that it puts in a viewer's intuition and willingness in going along with it right through to its rewarding finish..."
Entertainment Weekly - 03/01/2002
"...The participation of the filmmaker's real-life wife, Debra Winger, as Barlow's ex gives the scenes between the two of them an unfakeable erotic charge..."
BIG BAD LOVE brings to life the characters that populate Mississippi writer Larry Brown's short story collection of the same name. Leon Barlow (Arliss Howard) is a writer with a compulsion to drink and a bathroom wall papered with his rejection letters. Powered by endless cases of beer, an undying desire for his estranged wife (Debra Winger), and his Vietnam War buddy Monroe (Paul Le Mat), he continually plugs away at his manual typewriter, full of anger and limitless hope that he will sell a story. Leon is suddenly forced to rethink his way of life, though, when tragedy strikes both a close friend and his young daughter.
An obvious labor of love by writer/director/star Howard and producer/star (and wife of Howard) Debra Winger, BIG BAD LOVE succeeds at capturing the life the struggling writer, the fractured thought processes of the alcoholic, and the languorous pace of life in the rural south. Howard turns in a mannered, passionate performance, and the too-seldom seen Winger and Le Mat are both very welcome screen presences. Striking cinematography and a painstakingly chosen soundtrack also add greatly to this rewarding tale of friendship, tragedy, addiction, and ambition.