Film Review: The Big Wedding

The Big Wedding

With its all-star cast, The Big Wedding is a formulaic but sufficiently enjoyable rom-com.

Alejandro and Missy are getting married. Alejandro’s birth mother is very traditional, so he does not tell her his adoptive parents are divorced. With his father Don living with a new partner, Don and his ex-wife Ellie attempt to keep up the charade…

Based on a 2006 French film, The Big Wedding offers a familiar set-up. The film focuses the trials and tribulations of an extended family as they come together for the youngest member’s wedding. The narrative progresses along the expected route.

There is sufficient humour to make The Big Wedding entertaining. The language and the subject of some of the material is more adult than some viewers might expect. However the film does have a 15 rating which compensates for this.

The Big Wedding features numerous scenes with heart-to-heart conversations. Some of these are quite touching. Nonetheless, others do feel like a deliberate attempt to pull at the heartstrings. It is a shame the film demeans itself in this way.

With the whole family featuring in The Big Wedding, there are a number of different strands with each member getting their own story. This could make the film feel cramped, but director and screenwriter Justin Zackham ensures that each plays out in a suitable manner. Some of the strands are more engaging than others. The central narrative with Don, Ellie and Bebe, and Jared’s story are more interesting than Lyla’s strand for example.

Robert De Niro and Diane Keaton are believable as divorced couple Don and Ellie. Susan Sarandon is decent as Bebe, while Topher Grace has good comedy chops as Jared, despite his character being somewhat dubious.

The Big Wedding ticks all the boxes viewers would expect, but does little more than this. The film’s intended audience should be entertained.

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