When chaos ensues at Paul and Margene’s wedding, Jim, a recently heartbroken groomsman is tasked with managing the reception. In part with his former high school sweetheart, Alex, he’s forced to wrangle his unruly friends to maintain order, all while learning to love again. Stakes rise and cakes fall throughout an unforgettable evening of chaos in this romantic comedy that captured the “Best of Fest” at the 2016 Fayetteville Film Festival, “Best Narrative Feature Ensemble” at the Tulsa American Film and the “Technical Brilliance Award” at the St. Louis International Film Festival.
What We Thought:
The plot of The Wedding Party isn’t anything original or groundbreaking, but what is groundbreaking is the film itself. The movie was captured in one single, continuous 119 minute take.
The story of the film is something we’ve seen a thousand times before. A wedding doesn’t go as planned and you have all the clichéd characters you expect. There’s the drunk chick making a fool out of herself. There’s the old friends who spend the entire movie in the “Will They/Won’t They” angle. There is the woman who just wants to find someone. Of course there’s a wedding crasher who no one knows. The film ends how you expect it to end and that’s fine.
But you watch the movie for one reason, the long continuous take. The camera moves over and over again throughout the film following one character to the next. It starts with the wedding ceremony, tracks the couple down the aisle and in and out of the building, the reception area, the tennis courts, the bar and more. Characters come in and out of the camera and at times you don’t realize it’s only been one take.
There are times you can tell it’s been one take and the camera movement feels forced to follow someone or another. Just like the acclaimed (yet overrated) long take in the Daredevil TV show, there were areas in the film that there could have been cuts and made the film flow more naturally. Any time you open a door you could cut without it feeling like a break. Look at what Alejandro González Iñárritu and Emmanuel Lubezki did on Birdman, it all felt like one long take, but there were cuts in doorways that made the film flow without feeling forced.
You wouldn’t expect a romantic comedy type film to bring anything new to the table, but that’s what The Wedding Party does. It has an overly done story with the typical characters you expect in a rom-com, but you watch the film to see how it was made. Besides writing about movies I work in the film industry and will be telling people to check out this film because of its unique filmmaking qualities.
- Debia Adkeniz (“Once Upon a Time”, I Frankenstein)
- Michael Adler (“True Detective”)
- Molly Burnett (“True Blood”, “Days of Our Lives”)
- Meg Cionni (“Mad Men”)
- Blake Lee (“Mixology”)
- Allison Paige (“Flash”, The Dog Lover)
- Brian Thomas Smith (“The Big Bang Theory”, Danny Collins)
- Moses Stern (Unfriended)