"Would somebody just punch me in the face again?"
The best thing I can say about The Big Wedding is that it is only 80 minutes long. If it were 10 minutes longer I don't think I could've made it through the entire thing because it is such a forceful mess with cliches thrown all over the place. At least in other mainstream romantic comedies you have a main story that reaches its conclusion nicely wrapped up with a beautiful ribbon on top, but here you have like five different conflictive stories that magically reach their resolution in less than 10 minutes. Not even Houdini could pull off a trick like that. The entire film focuses on this one messed up family where each member is going through some difficult moment in their relationship and after hearing them ramble for 70 minutes they all peacefully find their resolution and live happily ever after. The Big Wedding is class 101 in Introduction to Mainstream Movie Cliches. What made things even worse is that director Justin Zackham (whose major film credit is writing the screenplay for The Bucket List) had an all-star cast to work with here and none of the characters felt like a real human being. Everyone played a one dimensional and stereotypical character. This is one of the laziest and most shameful movies of the year and I doubt many people will enjoy this "comedy."
Alejandro (Ben Barnes) and Missy (Amanda Seyfried) are a young couple preparing for their big wedding, which means that Alejandro's dysfunctional family has to come together for this special occasion. Alejandro was adopted and raised by Don (Robert de Niro) and Ellie (Diane Keaton) until they were divorced and Don's mistress, Bebe (Susan Surandon), moved in. Don and Ellie had two other children prior to adopting Alejandro: Lyla (Katherine Heigl) and Jared (Topher Grace). Apparently after their divorce Ellie abandoned the country and Lyla broke ties with her father. Now 10 years later everyone gets together for Alejandro's marriage. The only problem is that Alejandro has always kept close ties with his real mother from Colombia, Madonna (Patricia Rae), a devout Catholic who disapproves of divorce and therefor he has never told her anything about his adoptive parents separation. He asks Ellie and Don to act like a married couple and that pretty much leaves Bebe out of the picture thus creating a bit of chaos and building tension along the way.
There isn't anything nice I can say about this movie so I will keep my review short. There are several other stories and things going on in this film that barely get touched on the surface or are simply used as a gag and not dealt with. Robin Williams plays the priest who is going to marry the couple (we've seen him play this same role in the past). Alejandro is not a catholic and doesn't want to lie to the priest about his beliefs because he doesn't think it would be right, but on the other hand he is capable of lying to his mother about his adoptive parents. I had an issue accepting this and I guess it was a main concern because at one point this is addressed in the film, but it is resolved rather lazily like pretty much every conflict that arose in the film. Everything just felt so fake that it was hard to really identify with any of the characters because none of them played a real human being. This isn't the way conflicts are resolved. Nothing about this film is recommendable, and what makes matters even worse is that such a talented cast was put to waste with this terrible screenplay. The Big Wedding is one of the worst films of 2013.
My Rating: 2,7/10