Title: The Big Wedding

Directed by: Justin Zackham

Starring: Robert De Niro, Katherine Heigl, Diane Keaton, Amanda Seyfried, Topher Grace, Robin Williams, Susan Sarandon, Ben Barnes

Running time: 90 minutes, Rated R, Available on Blu-ray

Special Features: “Coordinating The Big Wedding” Featurette

Ellie (Keaton) and Don (DeNiro) have raised 3 successful children -Lyla (Heigl), Jared (Grace) and adopted son Alejandro (Barnes). After Ellie and Don got divorced, Ellie moved out and Don moved on with Ellie’s best friend Bebe (Sarandon). The family is now reuniting for the weekend because Alejandro is getting married to Missy (Seyfried). Alejandro’s devout catholic birth mother and sister are invited to the wedding, but he neglected to tell them that his parents are divorced. In order to keep the peace, he begs his parents to pretend they’re still married until the weekend is over.

The Positive: Some funny dialogue. The acting is good.

The Negative: Remaking a foreign film don’t always translate correctly. This plot doesn’t work. The whole story is old fashioned and tired. Topher Grace’s character is a 30 year old virgin and suddenly decides to lose it with his adopted brother’s biological sister? Most of the jokes and plotlines show desperation from the writer/director, wanting to get a reaction from the audience; like an annoying child shrieking “watch me!” One scene truly irritated me when she gives him a handjob at the dinner table in front of his family. Who does that?! That’s not sexy and spontaneous, that’s just slutty and gross. Another scene that bothered me was when Ellie & Don give into temptation and have sex after being a few decades divorced. He’s cheating on his long-term girlfriend with whom he cheated on his wife before he divorced. That’s so French cinema cliche. Does it happen here in America? Probably, but it’s not sexy, it’s just sad.  Robin Williams is playing almost the same character as he did in the flop License to Wed; he’s playing a character that obviously wasn’t written with him in mind, or else it wouldn’t have been so flat and dry.  I wasn’t looking for his standard energetic comedic performance, but they could’ve allowed some personality to shine.

The actors appeared to have a good time making the film per their enthusiasm on the behind the scenes featurette, although seemed a little squandered on the product.  Watch it for the star powered ensemble acting, but it’s predictable and uneventful.

Total Rating: C-

Reviewed by: JM Willis

The Big Wedding Movie

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