Published On: Fri, Mar 25th, 2016

‘My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2’ is back with familiarity, predictable laughs

Have you ever gone to a long-awaited family reunion and just basked in the familiarity of it all?

No matter how many years have passed, your cousins are still exactly the same playful guys they always were, but just older.  As you hear the same old stories that your uncle has always told, you’re immediately tired of the script you can recite word for word, but you’re still smiling as you roll your eyes behind his back.  The whole time, you’re thinking that it has just been too long and you should do this more often because you miss the sense of family all around you.

Well, that’s a good way to describe My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2, the sequel to the 2002 comedy about a wedding bringing together two very different cultures all in the name of love.

Opening March 25, 2016, Nia Vardalos takes us back into the lives of the Portokalos family.  As their rebellious “we’re too Greek” daughter is preparing for college and her parents are aging, Toula (played by Vardalos herself) is also faced with needing to put a romantic spark back into her marriage.  Add to that an unexpected family secret and its all hands on deck to plan a wedding again.

My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2 cast photoThe only great surprise in the film is the unexpected family secret.  However, everyone’s reaction to the twist is pretty predictable and that’s where the sense of the family reunion came into play for me as a viewer.   That’s also where the big laughs come into play as well… and I mean some really big, laugh-out-loud laughs.  Without ruining anything for the audience, there are a few other little surprises that you might not see coming…initially.  But then you’re like, “Oh, yeah.  I can see that.”  Every family reunion helps us learn more about those crazy cousins of ours.

While thoroughly enjoyable, this Playtone production doesn’t have the originality of its predecessor.  But it doesn’t seem that originality was the goal in making this film.  Familiarity and continuity were main themes that shown through.  You know the characters inside and out.  And it’s heart-warming to see the entire original cast come back together for this project.  The gang’s all here!

As a member of a multi-cultural family, I have to take a moment to point out that one of the reasons I think this film series is so enjoyed by people everywhere is that it stresses a wonderful sense of acceptance.  It’s uplifting to be able to embrace the aspects that give different cultures their own distinct flavors.  Dive right in and enjoy the variety of life.  Accepting your family and your culture’s idiosyncrasies that others may criticize is such a stress-reliever.  Even the nosy, overly-critical neighbors reveal themselves to be standing on the sidelines just waiting to be asked to join the party.  Just as in the original, Vardalos is once again inviting us all to the party.  What a wonderful concept to share with our kids (and thanks to the PG-13 rating, we can).

Overall My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2 receives 3 1/2 stars out of 5 stars

Author: Debbie Sage

My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2 movie poster


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