My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2 Film Review

In 2002, director Joel Zwick and writer Nia Vardalos taught the world just how loud and large a Greek wedding can be with their hit movie, My Big Fat Greek Wedding. It remains the highest grossing romantic comedy of all-time, even though it never reached the number one spot at the box office. The film has earned over 368 million dollars worldwide, on the small budget of only five million dollars. With that type of success, nobody was surprised when My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2  was announced, even if it was 14 years later.

Nia Vardalos and John Corbett in My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2

Nia Vardalos and John Corbett in My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2

 My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2 continues the story of Toula Portokalos (Vardalos) and her huge, sometimes very needy Greek family. Only this time, she’s trying to balance multiple parts of her life, including, dealing with her daughter who wants to go to college out of state and the lack of romance with her husband. But that’s not all, the entire Portokalos now have to ban together to arrange a wedding when they learn Toula’s parents, Gus (Michael Constantine) and Maria (Lainie Kazan), were never officially married.

My review for this movie is quite simple if you liked My Big Fat Greek Wedding then you will almost certainly like My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2. It is not the same movie, but close to it. The jokes, the characters and the blend of humor and romance are all too familiar. But as they say, if it’s not broke, don’t fix it. Just like in the first film there is the silly comedy, light romance, and a hilarious old man who will tell you that “you can give him any word, and he’ll show you how that word is Greek.” But this time around, My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2 is just that, big and fat! Fat because it is so bloated with unnecessary characters and minor subplots. Sure, I understand the Portokalos family is huge, but not all of them need a storyline. It’s like Vardalos felt sorry about leaving certain characters with nothing to do, so she wrote them quick lines to develop a small story for each of them.

For instance, the audience finds out that Joey Fatone’s character has a big secret, it surfaces two-thirds into the movie. It just come out of nowhere and then is resolved quickly and effortlessly about fifteen minutes later. It feels like a cheap throw-in to give Fatone something to do. It just isn’t necessary, especially since there are plenty of other subplots to worry about.  Another example is that we learn the character of Gus has a brother, who he doesn’t speak to. Again, this issue is resolved fast and with little to no effort. This, along with the Fatone storyline, has me confused. Why is this even in the movie? If it’s that easy to resolve, it must not be that important! So, why waste my time?

Luckily this film has a huge heart. Part of which the theme means well and wants to spread the message of love and family. But the actual heart of the movie is brought to life by the character of Gus, played by Constantine. He is a gem, even when he is calling his daughter old or yelling at his wife. There is something about his performance that is so genuine and heart-warming, I just smiled every time he was on screen. “The Greeks invented Italians,” he argues with an older man in physical therapy. This scene was one of many that Constantine had the audiences in hysterics. Beyond being funny, he makes you like and feel for the character, even when he says mean and stupid things. He manages to give such a charming performance that viewers let him become the center of the movie—the heart of it.

My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2 isn’t a great movie, but it isn’t awful either. It’s silly, ridiculous, and has plenty of Windex jokes. The movie feels about eighty-percent of rehashing the jokes that earned laughs 14 years ago. In the first 15 minutes alone, I believe we make 8-10 references to the first movie. But, that just further proves my point. The people who laughed and were charmed by Zwick’s 2002 smash hit, will enjoy the film just the same. It’s exactly what they’ve been waiting for. Now, for those that didn’t enjoy My Big Fat Greek Wedding—don’t even bother.

2.5 Stars

-By Jacob Tiranno

My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2 Video Review

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