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Friday, March 27, 2009

Movie Review: Rachel Getting Married

image from here.

Rachel Getting Married is a seriously good movie for people who like darker, more intricate, kind of sad movies. The story is about the family dynamic surrounding a girl who has been severely addicted to drugs and alcohol, and has received a weekend pass from her rehab facility to attend her sister's wedding. The main character is Kym, played by the brilliant Anne Hathaway, who returns home a few days before the wedding to a house full of family, strangers, and people who are all hopped up on wedding happiness, including an annoyingly saccharine bridesmaid. For a recovering addict, like Kym, returning to a family setting can be extremely difficult and presents its own challenges, but the addition of the wedding proves to be an exceedingly taxing and emotional experience for both Kym and her family.

image from here.

Anne Hathaway takes her character to new levels and is hauntingly realistic as a narcissist who is in constant need to be the center of attention, but makes you feel sorry for her in the end. Rosemarie DeWitt, who plays Rachel, is stunning and sad in this role as a sister whose numerous accomplishments, including her wedding, have been overshadowed by the negative actions of her sister, yet still upholds the tight bond that is sisterhood when push comes to shove.

image from here.

The movie is rather long, and the wedding scenes toward the end can get a bit boring, but for someone, like me, who has had experience with difficult family dynamics such as the one pictured in this film, it was a welcome reprieve from movies that typically have the word "married," or "wedding" in the titles. This is not your typical Anne Hathaway, Ella Enchanted-type movie; it's a striking portrait of family life that makes you feel like you're actually a part of it.

Plus, it doesn't help that Jonathen Demme, of The Silence of the Lambs fame, directed it.
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