Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Shannon Getting Ranty about Rachel Getting Married

Spoilers and Spoilsport Alert: If you haven’t seen this movie, and you don’t want me to ruin it for you, click away! Or if you liked this movie, you REALLY want to click away. Look, kittens!

Rachel Getting Married is about recovering addict Kym (Anne Hathaway) wreaking havoc upon her sister’s wedding weekend. However, after meeting her family, you can sort of see why Kym would hurl herself into a Percocet abyss and never come out. Personally, after two hours of the cinematic equivalent of a bearhug from Mr. Van Driessen, I wanted to climb inside a bottle of Makers’ and take some airplane bottles of Absolut along for the ride.

These people are dreadful. This is the most tedious wedding ever captured on film. It drags for hours. It drags for days. It kills your spirit. It eats babies and sells crack to orphans. It takes Rush Limbaugh as gospel, compares Obama to Hitler, and buys every copy of Going Rogue. It buys non-free trade coffee and exploits child workers. It is a force of evil upon this Earth.

I should have known. I should have turned it off five minutes into the interminable rehearsal dinner sequence, in which there are performances, and performance art, and then toasts. And more toasts…EVERY SINGLE PERSON takes the microphone, and I am there to watch it. Worst of all, nobody appears to be eating anything.
I’m getting ugly flashbacks to a wedding I attended years ago, where, thanks to a whole bunch of slideshows and toasts and being the last table called up to the buffet, dinner wasn’t until 10:00. And they ran out of potatoes, too. No wedding event should lack for potatoes. I bet the Rachel Getting Married people oppose potatoes, as potatoes are a force for good upon the world.

The wedding itself is self-consciously and self-servingly multi-culti, like a live-action We Are the World mashed up with a Pier 1 Imports. It’s got upper-class Connecticut whites co-opting Indian wedding traditions for no apparent reason other than saris are kind of pretty.

Oh, Lord, the groom is delivering his vows. In a capella Neil Young song format. I am cringing. The wedding guests are weeping. They are happy about this development. That tells you everything you need to know about these people. They think there’s no better wedding vow than a song that rhymes “diner” with “finer.” I hate everyone. I truly do. I want to die.

Plus the luncheon and the tent and the dancing and the…good heavens, this wedding is eternal. I am sick of celebrating the happiness of you insipid artsy-fartsy twerps and your narcissistic friends, all of whom have to get up on stage and be acknowledged time and again. Cut the cake and let us all go home. I wanna go home!

Oh heavens, they’ve cut the cake, but there’s hours and hours more to go.

This is like Synedoche, New York, but worse. And I thought nothing could be worse than Synedoche, New York, which attempted to elevate "Life sucks, then you die," into high art.
I hate everyone.

In the comments, tell me if you’d want to be a guest at the Rachel Getting Married wedding. Or tell me that movie was totally heartwarming and authentic, and I just don’t get it because Jonathan Demme is an auteur and resides outside the grasp of my tiny little mind.


Brando said...

That movie was painful--that family could hardly have been less interesting or pleasant. I suspect it just provides fuel for liberal-haters everywhere.

Brando said...

However, the movie might have been more enjoyable if it was re-titled "Rachel Getting Married and Then Family Attached By Ninjas".

Anonymous said...

I couldn't get past the first 15 minutes of the movie!

Malnurtured Snay said...

You missed the deleted scenes, where Anthony Hopkins shows up, grabs a bridesmaid and hauls her into the coatroom. A later cut scene shows Hopkins walking around wearing her face.

HP said...

At some point in that "film" (because you know that's what these people would call it--not a "movie" a "film"), during the absolute emotional peak when everyone is yelling and making each other feel bad, I could no longer take it, and burst into laughter.

My friend elbowed me and encouraged me to be quiet.

Then...several seconds later...from further back in the "theatre," I hear...laughter...a kindred spirit echoing my own mystification at the debacle taking place on the screen before us. To me, the movie's only highlight. I guess the moment it ended was ok too.

rdo said...

I wanted to kill the musicians 2 minutes into the movie. Who the hell invites a trio of screeching instrumentalists to play a god-awful soundtrack for the entire weekend?

The entire movie was self-congratulatory. The only thing that was missing (or maybe it happened off camera) was that all the guests brought a "dish to pass" for the wedding meal.

Also, wedding dancing (to be fun/good) needs to crescendo to a peak of all our frenzied movement and crowd singalong( the wedding I went to in NOLA a few weeks back where the singer was crowd-surfing!). That would have been impossible at this ragout of a wedding--Trinidadian carnival dancers, a fiddler, a crap band, and a DJ--which was completely incoherent.

So yes I gave this movie no stars

Shannon said...

Brando - "Attached by Ninjas" would be awesome. Like, a bunch of ninjas come in during the cake-cutting scene and Velcro everyone together.

Anon - I made it through the entire 1 hour 53 minute run, of course, I took frequent breaks to dust the apartment, empty the dishwasher, etc.

Snay - See, that would have been a good twist!

HP - It's not even a film. It's a cinematic event.

Most of the family fight scenes made me feel horribly awkward, like when you're out for dinner with a married couple and they start sniping at each other. I cracked up from sheer discomfort.

Shannon said...

RDO - Yeah, the music variety was excessive - it felt a little too self-servingly like a reenactment of We Are the World. I kept looking for an Eskimo guy with a harpoon and an igloo to make the tableau complete.

Jamie said...

That's too bad, the premise of a cracked-out sister wrecking a wedding sounds awesome. I'm guessing it isn't a comedy though.

Titania said...

I have not seen the movie, but "We are the World" gives me nightmares; there is probably no song I have ever hated as much as I hate that one

squindia said...

thank you for perfectly articulating all that is wrong with this movie. my sister loved it and i now cast a suspicious eye her way - often. surprisingly the soundtrack introduced me to a great group - New York Style Yoga - 'Black Bombay' is a nice album if you are into that sort of thing :-)

bh said...

Yeah. It sucked. I would've gotten obnoxiously drunk at that wedding, thrown up on the bride/groom, then passed out in a trashcan.

It would have been more entertaining that way.

lacochran said...

It was a bad film. The father totally skeeved me out.

On a self-congratulatory note (seems appropriate), our wedding had food and drink served immediately and no receiving line because I hate to wait for food so no one else should have to wait, either.

Shannon said...

Jamie - If there was comedy there, it was mostly unintentional. Personally, I think no wedding is complete wihtout a cracked-out sister.

Titania - the only thing more PC (and creepy) is It's a Small World After All.

squindia - Now, if she shows up at your wedding with a shiner, you'll know your sister took that movie way too seriously.

bh - And then I would have rolled your trashcan down a hill. For extra giggles.

Lacochran - Oh, god, the man would NOT stop pawing his daughters. So grody.

Heather said...

I made the huge mistake of buying this movie a couple weeks ago (on sale), and wow! I mean seriously that dishwasher scene?? What was the point. So many scenes in that movie had no point, ha.
Also I must agree on the annoying band that just played on and on.
I had to take a day long break in between the first half and second half of the movie so I was able to actually finish watching it.

Dmbosstone said...

I saw this film last year as part of my Oscar Watch- I can't remember what I thought exactly of the film and it looks like I watched it and didn't blog about it. Sorry I'm no good.

Alex said...

that sounds wrist-slittingly awful.

Erik said...

Wow, such hate for the movie. I have to admit that I didn't think it was as bad as you did, but I also have to admit I didn't pay that much attention to it. I think I was reading the Internets while my wife was watching.

On a side note, I just found your blog and have really enjoyed the hand full of posts I've read.

Cyndy said...

Yes that was a miserable movie about a bunch of self-absorbed miserable people. I didn't think it was as wretched as Synedoche though. That felt a lot longer to me, and slightly more miserable.

Shannon said...

Heather - The point of the dishwasher scene was that rich people who have never had to do dishes look at loading a dishwasher and think it seems kind of fun.

Dmbosstone - I'd make you rewatch the movie as punishment, but that seems cruel.

Erik - Welcome! Stick around, we're a fun group.

Cyndy - My new standard for everyhting is, "Is it as bad as Synedoche, New York?" If it's not, I'm ok. That's gotten me through Turkish prison, waterboarding, and Rachel Getting Married.

Sylvia said...

I couldn't agree more with your opinion of this movie. It dragged and dragged. Who the heck has weddings like that? The whole scene where they're arranging the seating chart is ridiculous.

freckledk said...

10mg of valium and a goblet of wine got me through that film, but just barely.

That and Bride Wars is enough for me to wish a pox on Anne Hathaway's house.

Shannon said...

Sylvia - You don't use porcelain figurines when you do seating charts? Really?

Frecks - I've never seen Bride Wars, because ugh. Can we please have a movie where women aren't competitive and materialistic, that DOESN'T end with them driving a car off a cliff?

Sara said...

This was my exact reaction when it came out, and then I was totally mystified by all the critical hyperbole. My favorite scene: loading the dishwasher. For, like, fifteen minutes. HOW IS THIS A MOVIE??

Abbie said...

Thank you! I thought I just wasn't "deep" enough for this "film"... lol My own low self esteem prompted me to google "rachel getting married I dont get it" just to see if I was the only one who was on the verge of becoming a drug addict ONLY because of watching this movie!!

mikelongrealty said...

Finally someone summed up this movie perfectly. I could not believe this movie and the actors in it were nominated for awards. I think those doing the nominating must have read the cliff notes and thought "artsy movie with some known actors" and gave it the benefit of the doubt. This movie was painful and I am a much dumber person for having watched it. I became depressed for 6 months having watched it. Bad move, bad.