September 22, 2019

BY JESSICA PETT

Everyone loves a good sequel but when the first movie was made almost 15 years ago, some have their doubts about whether it is going to live up to its expectations. My Big Fat Greek Wedding came out in 2002 and surprisingly wowed its audience, earning just over $240 million at the box office, making it the second highest romantic comedy in history behind Pretty Woman.

Much like the original, a wedding, an abundance of family and a few bumps along the way are all part of the sequel. The film takes place about 18 years after the original. Toula, played by Nia Vardalos, and her giant family are shaken when they find out that her parents aren’t actually married. Marriage is a cornerstone in the eyes of her Greek parents played by Michael Constantine and Lainie Kazan, and the rest of the family for that matter, so a wedding must quickly transpire. Meanwhile, Vardalos’ character struggles with her teenage daughter’s decision to move far from home for college (though who can blame her). Vardalos’ character continues to be a helicopter parent, sister and daughter, throughout the film. She is forced to face mean neighbours, deal with a strange bathroom incident and entirely plan her mother’s wedding in a matter of days.

Despite the feeling of comfort all of the original characters bring, the movie had an uphill battle considering the much-anticipated Batman and Superman shared its opening weekend. Although it made $18 million, it’s hard to understand how. The situations were over-dramatic and the jokes were quite lame, provoking a mere chuckle here and there. The film struggles to incite excitement toward its anti-climactic end.

There are several scenes that appear to be there just to fill space. Gus takes a fall getting out of the bathtub and the men of the family unwillingly help him out, only to have an ambulance come and take him away. The arrival of Gus’s brother doesn’t enhance the movie even in the slightest and far too much time is spent during a scene where the family teaches Gus how to use a computer (a tease from the original movie). Toula’s brother Angelo, played by Joey Fatone, holds a big secret … one that came out of nowhere and appeared far too late into the film.

It’s a bland plot but nevertheless, new character Paris, played by Elena Kampouris, sort of saves the day. She plays her role well and does the film justice despite the work of her colleagues.
This much-anticipated film fell flat unlike its predecessor. Some films just aren’t meant for a sequel and My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2 is one of them. I give this film two out of five stars.

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