There are bad movies that are bad because they fail on every conceivable level to hilarious or infuriating results and then there are bad movies that are bad simply because they don’t do anything interesting even though they have enjoyable aspects- THE BIG WEDDING falls into the latter category. This ensemble film that I hesitate to call a romantic comedy is not without its chuckle worthy moments, but is extremely inept at creating sustained moments of interesting comedy, romantic gestures and effective family drama. In fact, the chances the film actually takes border on cartoon level hijinx and are better at causing mass eye rolls than genuine laughs.
The film has its fair share of subplots going on, but essentially the film is about a family that is brought together because their adopted brother, Alejandro (Ben Barnes) is getting married. Since Alejandro is worried about what his biological mother will think of his adoptive parents divorce he asks them to pretend to be married for the weekend.
Some of the ridiculous side plots include Topher Grace as a 29 year old virgin and is struck with an immense lust for his to be sister- Katherine Heigl as a hard ass daughter with a secret you can see coming a mile away- and Alejandro’s to be wife’s parents who are apparently in some sort of financial crunch and are ridiculously racist plus the even more ridiculous sexual reveals lurking in the final act. All of this adds up to a film that’s entirely too convoluted to work on a deep level and too lazy to make any one of them more interesting than the other.
Not that I expected the film to shake the foundation of everything I ever knew or expected from movies, but no one (at least I hope) goes into a movie rooting for it to be a complete waste of their time- if that was the case you’re willingly wasting your own time in which case you deserve every moment of it drained from your free time. I dig Robert DeNiro even if most of his most recent choices may not rank up with what he’ll be remembered for, his work here is no exception, but it’s far from his worst. In fact I’d probably rank his involvement one of the only redeeming factors of the film though his character also clocks in for some of the more embarrassing moments.
The script is mostly void of interesting family drama save for a heart to heart near the end that I quite liked and the comedy barely gets to the point of eliciting chuckles here and there. For the most part I found myself questioning every decision made from a directing perspective, but more so on a logical level when it came to scripting some of the sequences in the film.
There are few things I can say that will actually talk someone into seeing this, but more importantly I’m actually urging the opposite. If by some chance you feel you have to see this even if it’s just to see if it’s as incompetent as I’ve described I’d at least wait to rent the film at a significant discount or as your flipping through cable later on down the road. THE BIG WEDDING only earns its title by somehow getting some of the big name actors to be in it rather than the content itself. Honestly, there have been bigger failures to hit the screen over the years, but that’s still probably not the kind of praise any film should hope for.
Written By: Luke (@CrummyLuke on Twitter)