A follow-up to the 2002 indie smash hit that put comedian Nia Vardalos in the spotlight for all of two seconds before she tried to do a sitcom and everyone was like eh, My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2 is the latest in a string of long-delayed sequels that the entertainment industry so loves churning out nowadays. Fuller House. Zoolander No. 2. Anchorman 2. Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon: Sword of Destiny. The upcoming Gilmore Girls revival. Big Fat Greek 2: Electric Boogaloo should have been made by Netflix for $5 and a plate of spanakopita, but somebody thought it was worth a theatrical release, so here we are.
2 Big 2 Fat 2 Greek isn’t terrible so much as it’s aggressively bland and predictable, ie “terrible without the decency to be entertaining about it.” Toula (Nia Vardalos), still married to Ian (John Corbett), spends her days caring for her parents, Gus (Michael Constantine) and Maria (Lainie Kazan), as well as angsty teenage daughter Paris (Elena Kampouris), who’s taken up her mother’s “complains that her family is smothering her” mantle.
Because we have to get another wedding in there somehow, Gus finds out that he and Maria aren’t technically married, since the priest who performed their wedding decades ago never signed the marriage certificate. There’s a bunch of manufactured drama about whether Maria will agree to tie the knot again, even though there’s never any doubt that she will. Blah blah “middle-aged couples need to find the romance in their marriage again.” Blah blah “Men can’t do laundry and women are emotional!” Blah blah “helicopter moms—howboutit?!” To call Big Fat Greek Wedding 2 a “mom movie” is an insult to mothers everywhere.
Vardalos’ dialogue is characterized by lines where I’m honestly not sure if they’re supposed to be funny. I know they’re not. But they’re so unfunny that I can’t even tell if comedy is the goal. Like:
“The Greeks invented Facebook. We called it the telephone.”
“Parents deserve a sex life.” “Said no one ever!”
“If you’re afraid to do your duties [on your wedding night], just pretend to faint and your husband will take it from there.”
Ha. Ha. Her husband had sex with her when he thought she was passed out. Who says a target audience of middle-aged women won’t enjoy a good ol’ fashioned lazy rape joke?
I checked out around 30 seconds in, when Joey Fatone’s name appeared in the opening credits. (Did you forget he was in the original, and therefore would probably be in this one, too? Because I did, and that was not a pleasant surprise.) Before the opening credits were over, I was ready to call it a day and leave. I specifically sat in a row with a lot of leg room so I could slump down in my seat and go Uggggghhhhhhhhhhhh every time something stupid happened. I did that a lot. Director Kirk Jones cast Greek yogurt salesman John Stamos as a news anchor—the role John Stamos was born to play! Look at that hair! Look at those teeth!—and then wasted him by only putting him in three scenes. Vardalos wrote the exchange “She’s from Holland.”/”I don’t speak Hollandaise!” and honestly expected people to laugh at it.
Step One: Characters that tell bad jokes.
Step Two: ??????
Step Three: Comedy!
John Corbett’s hair is horrible.
The whole thing’s a mess.