Film review: ‘The Big Wedding’

WEK_BigWedding_0426

Credit: Lionsgate

The Big Wedding
Director: Justin Zackham
Starring: Robert De Niro, Diane Keaton, Susan Sarandon, Amanda Seyfried
Rated: R
Rating: 1 star

The “R” rating attached to “The Big Wedding” isn’t a mistake — there’s surprisingly enough vulgar humor here to earn the adults-only stamp. Right from the get-go (literally, the first scene), we’re treated to a I-can’t-believe-they’re-going-there romp between Robert De Niro and Susan Sarandon, whose on-air tryst is interrupted by the return of Diane Keaton’s character, the ex wife still in the picture.

Don (De Niro) and Ellie (Keaton) divorced after 20 years together, but they’re reuniting for the weekend — with Bebe (Sarandon), Don’s new girlfriend — for the marriage of their adopted son, Alejandro (he’s adopted, OK?) to Missy (Amanda Seyfried). One problem: Their soon-to-be-wed son’s birth mother is coming from Colombia, and her strict Catholic beliefs mean that she likely wouldn’t be happy to hear that Don and Ellie are divorced. So, Al hitches a plan to have his parents pretend they’re still married, just for the weekend, but since this is a movie, you can tell that nothing will go as planned. Secrets get out, lies are unearthed and the relationships between the family are thrown a curveball.

Caught in the middle are Al’s siblings, Jared (Topher Grace) and Lyla (Katherine Heigl). For the amount of time we know these characters (a mere 90 minutes), their one-dimensional characterizations do a complete 180, which seems neither plausible or all that exciting, considering you don’t really care about either of them (maybe Grace, but only because he’s cute). And poor Amanda Seyfried and Robin Williams, whose chops aren’t given the opportunity to shine in this limp feature.

Yes, everyone’s family is crazy, we get it, but somehow this film just doesn’t do the theme justice. If you want to see a solid take on the whole wedding-mishap tale, skip this and rent “My Big Fat Greek Wedding” instead.



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