Is giving “The Big Wedding” faint praise such as it was better than expected a positive or negative? Is saying that parts are better than the whole damning it? In any case can anyone explain how Katherine Heigl and Amanda Seyfried keep on getting lead roles in big films?
“The Big Wedding” takes on so many stories that all get lost. This is a movie for people who think old folks having sex is funny and Robert De Niro getting punched by everyone and anyone will just crack you up. We have De Niro, divorced from Diane Keaton with whom he had 2 children and an adopted child, living with Susan Sarandon for 8 years and, oh yes, Keaton and Sarandon were best friends when they met De Niro and now since their adopted child, Ben Barnes, is getting married to Seyfried and his natural mother is coming from Columbia, and she being a devout Catholic, Keaton and De Niro have to make believe they are still married. Whew! Did you get that because we are just starting. Seyfried’s mother, Christine Ebersole, has a ‘thing’ for Sarandon and Keaton, not to mention plastic surgery, whileher father, David Rasche, is bankrupt and in trouble with Wall Street.
Barnes and Heigl’s brother, Topher Grace, is a 29 year old doctor who is a virgin while Barnes sister, Ana Ayora, comes to the wedding with her mother, and in their first scene together Ana dives into the lake for a nude swim making sure Topher sees her first and then he wonders, for not too long, if it would be incestuous for them to have sex. Was it mentioned that Heigl and her husband have just separated when the movie opens? Barnes and Ayora’s mother, Patricia Rae, who doesn’t speak English, has a life of her own that comes out of nowhere. Wait! Almost forgot Robin Williams, the priest, who doesn’t have any kind of sex, as far as the script goes.
Susan Sarandon and Diane Keaton comes through unscathed and even add to the picture, the former with her red hair and looking good while the latter still has that impish Annie Hall look. De Niro comes through with a very effective scene late in the movie and, obviously worked out for the bedroom scene. Ben Barnes is very impressive in looks and what little chance he gets to acts as is Topher Grace.
The screenplay, and direction, by Justin Zackham is a mess though the locations in Connecticut are beautiful. The movie is Rated “R” for good reason and if you are the type who smirks at sex scenes, or language, this is your film.