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Title: My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2

Movie: :3stars:
Video: :4stars:
Audio: :4stars:
Extras: :2stars:

HTS Overall Score:72

“My Big Fat Greek Wedding” was a fun little comedy that came out of nowhere and became an instant cult classic among fans. However, there really was no call for a sequel, especially after the TV show, “My Big Fat Greek Restaurant” bombed in the first season. Then Hollywood (and Nia Vardalos) decided that this is sequel season and “My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2” was greenlit. The first film in the “franchise” (if you can call it that) was a cute little movie that mixed a bit of traditional Rom Com with some “Princess Diaries” ugly duckling transformation tropes, but the real pull was the incredibly offbeat nature of traditional Greek families (My old college professor was a first generation Greek immigrant, and pretty much most of what goes on in the movie is true in terms of familial interactions). “My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2” is nowhere near as cute a movie, and really more clichéd than anything. That’s not to say it’s a bad movie, as it really has some fun moments, especially with auntie Voula, but it’s definitely a step down in quality.

It’s been 17+ years since Toula Portokalos found her true love in the non-Greek arms of Ina (John Corbett). Now they have a 17 year old daughter on the verge of going to college, not to mention the fact that they live right next door to her overstuffed, and very traditional Greek family. That means that every aspect of Toula’s daughter, Paris’ (Elena Kampouris), life is under the scrutiny and “suggestion” of a whole crowd of well-meaning busybodies. To make matters worse, Toula and Ian REAAAAALLY want Paris to go to Northwestern University, right there in Chicago, but Paris is just stretching her wings and really wants to go out of state so she can find her own way.

The whole wedding aspect of the film comes into play when Toula’s parents, Gus (Michael Constantine) and Maria (Lainie Kazan) never had their wedding certificate signed all those decades ago. Which means TECHNICALLY they aren’t married religiously speaking. So, with that in the way, this only leaves room for one option. A giant family wedding with all of the works. That is if Gus breaks down and actually proposes to Maria (again) as she’s asking for. As you probably guessed, Gus is a stubborn old fool, and rain or shine, he’s not to going to lose face and propose to his own wife. That being said, if you think a Greek woman will roll over for a play like that then you have another thing coming. Hilarity ensues until one of the two stubborn old fools break down, only to start off a chain reaction of lunacy as the wedding preparations are finalized (complete with pink limousines, gaudy wedding cakes, and a crazy family tree search to prove once and for all that Gus is descended from Alexander the Great).

“My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2” is just like baklava. It’s sweet and flaky going down the hatch, but crumbles easily under any pressure, leaving you with a bit of a tummy ache by end of the film. It’s well-meaning and certainly has its funny moments, but it is also plagued with overly clichéd Rom com tropes that goes against the very grain of what the first movie was about. The freshness is gone, and the jokes are recycled, but I still have to say that the family dynamic is really what will bring viewers back for seconds on the series. It’s formulaic and definetly a bit dull at points, but Nia and John Corbett work well together, and the rest of the family are just icing on the cake.

I really enjoyed the addition of Paris to the film, and also was pleasantly surprised by the fact that their daughter WASN’T the one being married off. The parent’s re-marriage (or really first marriage by some definitions) was well done and even though Gus and Maria can be a bit wearing, they fit together like a hand in a glove and that is what really sells the pairing. John Stamos makes a brief appearance during the first act, but after that it’s really just a reunion of the old cast with Joey Fatone of “N’Sync”, Lou Mandylor and Ian Gomez back for more old fashioned ribbing.


Rated PG-13 for some suggestive material

Video :4stars:
Deviating from the HBO release, “My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2” is filmed 100% digitally using the Red Epic cameras, and looks stylishly similar to the first film, albeit just a bit glossier. Colors are bright and well saturated, with lots of emphasis on whites, blues and golds in the traditional Greek manner. The white wedding dress pops off the screen with incredible detail and the wrinkles and makeup applied to the older women (in copious amounts, which is definitely intentional) is caked on with overzealous touches. There is some softness to the film, almost a Vaseline like texture that keeps the image from being razor sharp though. Although black levels are very strong most of the time, the softness I mentioned also seems to affect those darker bits. It’s a well done digital transfer, and one that has certainly been stylistically grade, but a good one nonetheless.

Audio :4stars:
Given that the first movie did so well, the film shows a decent increase from the very “made for TV” mix that “My Big Fat Greek Wedding” suffered from. The mix is strong and vibrant, with good dialog that echoes from all four corners of the roof with loud guffaws and screeching old ladies in the background. The surrounds get a decent amount of action throughout, with the Greek inspired music as well as the hustle and bustle of a wedding underway. LFE is strong and powerful when called upon, but both the surrounds and the LFE tend to take back stage to the front three speakers, considering what genre of film we’re in.

Extras :2stars:

• Gag Reel
• My Big Fat Greek Dinner

Overall: :3.5stars:

Is “My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2” another instant classic? No, not by a long shot, but it is also nowhere near unwatchable comedy either. Fans of the original will want to see the sequel mostly due to the incredible cast reunion and the same hysterically painful situations they get into. Nia Vardalos is VERY passionate about the series, and has been trying to get them all back for quite some time, but it’s taken quite a few years to get them all in the same time frame. It’s a bit clichéd, and a bit overdone at points, but “My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2” is a cute enough comedy or mindless entertainment with the wife. Recommended for a watch.

Additional Information:

Starring: Nia Vardalos, John Corbett, Michael Constantine
Directed by: Kirk Jones
Written by: Nia Vardalos
Aspect Ratio: 2.40:1 AVC
Audio: English: DTS-HD MA 5.1, French, Spanish DTS 5.1, DVS Descriptive Audio (English)
Studio: Universal
Rated: PG-13
Runtime: 94 minutes
Blu-Ray Release Date: June 21st, 2016

Buy My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2 On Blu-ray at Amazon

Recommendation: Recommended for a Watch

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