bigweddingIs it so hard to create a ninety minute comedy?

Is it so hard to create a ninety minute comedy? Obviously it is. The Big Wedding had an excellent cast, a fairly humorous and unique story line, plus is submerged in an event that is always fodder for fiasco. So what happened? The answer is simple; too much.

Don (Robert De Niro) and Ellie (Diane Keaton) have been divorced for some time. Their three children, including an adopted son Alejandro (Ben Barnes), are grown and Don has even been in a longtime relationship with Bebe (Susan Sarandon). They are all planning a large wedding for Alejandro and his fiance Missy (Amanda Seyfried) when a wrench is thrown in the mix. Alejandro has never told his biological mother, who is very devout Catholic, that his adoptive parents are divorced. So Don and Ellie must now pretend to be married.

This seemingly simple synopsis soon bogs down in ill written humor, awkward sexual dialouge from old people, and way too many side stories involving less than minor characters. Each of Don and Ellie's kids have problems of their own and although touched on they are never given time to completely flush out. Not that we would even care. Of course Bebe isn't thrilled about the situation so that relationship arc is given screen time too. Not to even mention the vague and random story line of Missy's family that is head shakingly out of place.

This cast is strong and we know that De Niro can do couple comedy. Keaton has yet to prove that she can be anything but thinly neurotic and still seems to act as if she longs for the days of Woody Allen films. Katherine Heigl and Topher Grace are the other two adult children each given character issues that are too deep for everything else going on. So the rabbit trails are weak.

The Big Wedding is rated R for language, sexual content and brief nudity. Most of the language and content comes from De Niro. I felt bad that he had to deliver most of the lines. The lack of chemistry from any of the characters caused his lines to seem forced and predictable. I give it 1 out of 5 confessions. The whole movie was just a big mess.

Matt Mungle

Review copyright 2013 Mungleshow Productions. Used by Permission.

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