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The Big Wedding Trailer: Hell Is Other People, But Mostly It's Just Katherine Heigl

By Jay Stevens, Jr. | Industry | August 17, 2012 |

By Jay Stevens, Jr. | Industry | August 17, 2012 |

There are times when something just looks uninviting. It has all the vibes of slap to the face followed by a kick to the crotch. This is one of those times. The Big Wedding’s trailer features an all-star cast in trapped a field of movie cliché so thick one feels they’d be better off making crop circles signaling for an aerial rescue than attempt navigating through it.

The trailer is such a mess. In their attempt to introduce and tie everyone together in two and a half minutes, the filmmakers made everything into a cat’s cradle of who-gives-a-shit topped off with the obligatory oldies song snippets. By the third viewing, I started to wish that there were an additional scene of the whole wedding party dying horribly in fire.

Eternal First Wives Club member Diane Keaton and Robert De Niro play divorced couple Ellie and Don Griffin. Don now lives with his former mistress, (and Ellie’s former best friend) Bebe, played by Susan Sarandon. They and their adult children are gathering together because their youngest (adopted) son Alejandro, played by Ben Barnes, is about to be married to his Catholic girlfriend, Missy played by Amanda Seyfried. Katherine Heigl and Topher Grace play the other two Griffin children. At least I think they both do. Grace gets no lines in the trailer so it’s hard to be sure of his role.

There seems to be a very convoluted storyline where Keaton and De Niro are pretending to still be married to somehow appease the Catholic priest and their adopted son’s Catholic biological mother from Colombia who was found and flown in just in time for the wedding. I have absolutely no idea why in the 21st Century anyone would care one way or another what one’s parents are up to nor could I accept that anyone would think this farce somehow is better than the truth.

Robin Williams plays the priest, Father Monaghan, who looks like he just lifted the character from his involuntarily creepy turn as Reverend Frank from License to Wed. I had to check the credits to be sure the two characters had different names. Otherwise they’re clones, right down to the “None of your fucking business” inappropriate line of questioning. Williams looks about as believable as a man of the cloth as John Wayne Gacy was a harmless birthday clown. This would have likely been a very short-lived plot point in reality;

Priest: I’m not happy that your fiancé and his parents are… other than Catholic.
Fiancé: Okie Dokie Padre, guess we’re off to City Hall! ….dickwad.

Is it remotely possible for Katherine Heigl to show up in any movie now and not behave like she’s as infinitely annoyed to be there as we are to watch her? She appears to have two modes now; über bitch and Norma Desmond, which is especially perplexing when the lion’s share of her career consists of rom-coms and light dramas. I used to think it was just an unfair slight on my part, but now I realize that’s pretty much the only arrow in her quiver. The producers of most of her movies must feel the same since they seem to do nothing but play that up in every trailer. This one is no exception.

The trailer offers nobody for the audience to really like or care about nor even presents a situation that looks entertaining enough to endure for 90 minutes. It looks to have been cut as an argument for avoiding this movie like lepers at an arm-wrestling tournament. The movie was written and directed by Justin Zackham, whose most familiar piece on his resume is writing The Bucket List. By the looks of this trailer, it’s where the script to this movie should have been crumpled. It opens in theaters October 26th. You’ve been warned.

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