'Big Wedding' seems about money, not love
Despite a cast that includes Robert De Niro, Diane Keaton, Susan Sarandon, Amanda Seyfried and Robin Williams, “The Big Wedding” is a pretty bad movie.
It takes some real talent to waste so much, um, talent. But writer and director Justin Zackham, who based the film on the Swiss film “Mon Frere Se Marie,” has managed to do just that. This is essentially a stupid romantic comedy with a well-known cast.
Oh, and Katherine Heigl.
There is nothing about the movie that isn't utterly predictable. You meet a character and it's immediately obvious what's going to happen to him (or her). And then it happens.
Don and Ellie (De Niro and Keating) are, in the way that movie couples are, amicably divorced. He's a rich sculptor, she's a rich something or other; we don't really know. Don lives with Bebe (Sarandon), who owns a catering business, in the astoundingly beautiful home he used to share with Ellie.
Ellie is in town for the wedding of Alejandro (Ben Barnes), their adopted youngest son, who has just graduated from Harvard. He's marrying Missy (Seyfried); his brother, Jared (Topher Grace) and sister, Lyla (Heigl), are coming home for the nuptials.
Alejandro's birth mother Madonna (Patricia Rae) is also coming in for the wedding. A devout Catholic, she would never approve of Don and Ellie's divorce. This point is driven home by Father Moinighan (Williams, funny in a relatively restrained performance). So, they do what anyone would do in this situation: Lie and pretend that Don and Ellie are still married.
So basically you've got rich, supposedly smart people play-acting at life and love. What's not to like?
Most everything, really. There are a couple of laughs here and there, and all of the actors are pleasant enough. They're just asked to do really stupid things.
Which is fine; they get paid a lot of money to do them.
Bill Goodykoontz is a film critic for The Arizona Republic.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.