The Big Wedding Blu-ray Review
The Big Wedding
is actually not that big of a wedding at all. If you thought the all
would somehow indicate that the film would be one of many comedic
romantic success, and generally successful wonderment, that's sadly
that just isn't the case with this film. I genuinely hoped that the
be something special despite the fact that the trailers had absolutely
impact on me wanting to see the film, based solely on the stellar
a spectacular cast list. I'd go so far as to say The Big
Wedding has one of the best casts for a bad production in
recent years. And as for the main
The story is
simplistic. In fact, it's too simple for it to
be that engaging for most audiences. There is a family wedding that is
to take place because of the engagement of two of the characters,
(Ben Barnes) and Missy (Amanda Seyfried). As
the family fathers, chaos ensues. Issues
entangle everyone when Don (Robert De Niro) spends time with his
(Diane Keaton), rekindling romance despite a new girlfriend who was the
best friend to Ellie, Bebe (Susan Surandon).
Don and Ellie's
children Lyla (Katherine Heigl) and Jared
(Topher Grace) spend some "conferencing" time together in a hospital
(where Jared is one of the doctors), before they both join the
the family gathering: Lyla is actually pregnant and had some recent
trouble and Jared is a mess, wondering now if he should stop waiting
right person to lose his virginity to. Meanwhile,
Missy and her soon to be hubby
Alejandro are trying to win the affections of his paternal mother's
while the Father Moinighan (Robin Williams, in a typecast role
thematic idea behind License to Wed)
decides if they are ready for the next stage of their relationship, and
have you. Everyone gets into mishaps.
Things get weird. And by the time the credits have rolled, there is
of wedding, but I wouldn't necessarily call it a "big" one.
most of its time presenting crude humor jokes and trying to find some
every turn of events presented throughout the storyline, despite the
there isn't much going on during the film that is actually funny. There
to be a lot of jokes about the way in which these odd character
and in bizarre ways that makes things more jumbled and confusing for
all of the
characters. Yet that's about it. There's no great emotional arc, no
nothing remotely warm to hold on to as an audience member... it's
simply a sad
series of comedic hijinks that aren't as funny as the filmmakers would
them to be.
I had some degree of
hope for this movie. The cast list
just looked so amazing to me: I mean, come on, what other movie can say
includes a performance by Robert De Biro, Katherine Heigl, Diane
Seyfried, Topher Grace, Ben Barnes, Susan Sarandon, and Robin Williams?
None. Because there aren't any with the
films get made
with many great actors involved in one project and when it usually does
the results tend to mean one can expect something energetic and fun (Oceans 11) or just as cameo fodder for
celebrities to make an appearance and collect a paycheck (Valentine's
effort feels like neither of those examples, but instead it simply
around in mediocrity which manages to demonstrate absolutely nothing of
note in the filmmaking or in the acting.
So, what's good about
the film? The cast brings something inherently likeable because of the
appeal of these actors. You'll be mildly amused at times because the
cast is trying to make a mediocre movie a watchable and fun one. Heigl
some emotional heart to her part, Keaton enjoyably adds her distinctive
the effort, and Sarandon bring her best to her smaller and ultimately
role. The sad thing is realizing that practically every element of this
film feels generic and unimaginative and that none of the actors are
getting a strong part; something which would require them to stretch
The roles are
derivative, uninvolving, and limiting to the
cast. Seyfried and Barnes get barely any time in the film at all.
Grace gets a chance at one of the larger supporting roles, but it's
timing requirements hardly seem to suggest anything new; it simply
of That 70's Show, which also reminds
audiences how any rerun of that show would be more entertaining that
Unsurprisingly, The Big Wedding
is yet another example of De Niro sleepwalking
through delivering a performance, as he seems uninvolved
in trying to muster up any enthusiasm
for the part. It's too bad, especially following the brilliance of his
performance in Silver Linings Playbook,
one of his finest efforts to date.
The poorly written
screenplay (which is a remake adaptation
of a relatively obscure French film entitled Mon Frere se
Marie -- My Brother
is Getting Married) is nothing great to behold. It's attempting to
fanciful farce with a lot of over-the-top moments emphasized but the
just isn't there and the characterizations aren't as good as they could
hardly get the feeling of having known any of these characters, and it
the film uninvolving and ultimately disappointing.
Justin Zackham (2001's teen comedy Going Greek) isn't
capable of handing
the great cast he got involved in the project, which represents his
in the director's chair. The directing is average at best as the film
just be meandering creatively through the paces, too leisurely, and
many interesting things going on to make up for its average quality. He
manage to pull a single great performance out of the film and visually,
film feels more like a lone episode of a standard comedic TV show than
something with dramatic weight. Distractingly, the film also has subpar
cinematography by Jonathan Brown, who seem to have put the entire
some static style visually that never feels creatively involving.
elements are generally good. You can tell a
lot of money was spent on doing the sets, costumes, and other elements.
wedding itself doesn't ever seem to be a highlight, though. That
be one of the biggest issues of the entire production: Why is it even
"The Big Wedding?" when the
wedding is basically only utilized as a plot-point to plop the
Unfortunately, there isn't much going on with regards to any wedding in
effort. I absolutely dislike the effort,
which doesn't seem to care much about the concept or characters.
unlikely to connect to the generic storytelling.
Big Wedding is
technically proficient with a
1080p High Definition presentation which preserves the 2.35:1
ratio. The bitrates are high enough that the film is certainly given a generally
stellar encode with good depth and clarity. Unfortunately, the
is uninvolving and colors seem somewhat solemn and don't impress. It
fluctuates in softness as well, and that issue seems inherent to the
5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio
presentation isn't all that impressive at all. Surround activity is
limited to occasional ambiance and music but the bulk of the sound
front heavy and it's not particularly creative as a sonic-soundstage.
reproduction is notably good and that's often the best one can expect
type of film production. The quality lossless encoding helps the film
a bit more sonically relevant and involving.
lone extra on this release is a
featurette entitled "Coordinating The
Big Wedding" - a 16 minute long
look at the making of the film with interviews and clips spread
pretty standard material and most viewers won't probably enjoy the film
to find out details about the film's production afterwards.
doesn't feel so "big" after all: it's really a fairly sub-par comedy
with a lot of small ideas about what works in comedy.
It's a small, uninvolving, and disappointing
effort considering the stellar cast involved. The cast tries to makes
more interesting but the average screenplay and weak direction doesn't
This is a mediocre effort that feels like an unwanted piece of stale
a flop of a wedding reception; it's certainly not going to be notable
as anything more than an expired "desert" of a film.
Neil Lumbard is a lifelong fan of cinema, and a student who aspires to make movies. He loves writing, and currently does in Texas.