Monday, December 22, 2008

"Rachel Getting Married" (2008) - Movie Review

The family of bride side in “Rachel Getting Married” would be instantly decided as the exemplified family members epitomizing neurotic chaos. If there is a thought going on while watching to step out of the screen and place yourself in the most recent family get together of an event such as marriage, then every one of us in one form or other have seen similar chaos in their own family. This is “Rachel Getting Married”, the most thoroughly honest documentary styled film directed by Jonathan Demme with a powerful script by Jenny Lumet.

Rachel (Rosemarie DeWitt) is visited by the sobering addict sister Kym (Anne Hathaway) for the Indian themed wedding. A similar themed story propped up last year with Noah Baumbach directing “Margot at the Wedding”. In a parallel way the sisters love and hate each other to death. The environment though is considerably different with more colourful and merry Rachel than in dull and dreary Margot’s sister in Baumbach’s film. Here Kym is the outcast, attention seeking, adamant and unbearably childish sister of Rachel. She is loud and up the face of Rachel and every other who comes by. She wants to be the maid of honour but not to be thrown as a mercy chip, yet takes it with an unexplainable right. She believes that to be the holding rope of sisterhood between her and Rachel. Put a mix of an over affectionate and too much caring father (Bill Irwin) and an estranged mother (Debra Winger), you get a sour and putrid recipe for a family. But that is not all in a family, isn't it? The other side is not the facade rather their best times and characteristic. “Rachel Getting Married” never attains that in unison from all the members of the family but in spots and patches they do it to compliment each other.

Kym has been the centre of madness in her rebellious teenage years. Been a junkie and as a junkie owing ton of people money and annoyance to be atoned and the mistake which costed a life, we see her taking a time out from the Rehab centre. She is invited by the ever loving father who has forgiven and forgotten the things she did. He is in the aggressive mode of turning things around for her with a fierce force of overabundant love. Kym wants it when she needs to be in the womb of care and attention while sees it as her being wrapped on as a mummy when the feeling to be cared erodes away. Rachel on the other hand is happy in things going as planned and freaks out when hell breaks loose in the underlying thorn speeches by Kym. She has lost the hope in her and she could not stand the sight of her day being sucked in by the mess and cry Kym is making and signaling their dad to embrace. As love is shared and dispersed, the fairness is measured and calculated by each of them. It is a tangle of pain and ridiculousness.

Director Jonathan Demme follows the characters around with the shaky camera but stands still when the emotions are in place. Each of them are in their terms of being there in the wedding with their part to play. The old subtle enmity in people taking places left by the others and the return of the ex or in this case sister to be found distanced by her family pushes to her craziness a little more than usual. Among these personal wars comes and goes are the friends and relatives in their celebration of the love in marriage while leaving the room when the family breaks down.

I almost forgot to mention the husband to be Sidney (Tunde Adebimpe) slipping from the scene when his fiancé's family begins to throw blames, pain and disgrace at each other. He comes by when the storm recedes and picks up the pieces in a cue to us saying “I am marrying only the girl and not the family”.

What a performance does Anne Hathaway, Rosemarie DeWitt and Bill Irwin provides. How do they stand each other and smile at the edge in the end? Is there a point to confide, confess and continue leaving the past behind? Is that a longest stretch of possibility in a family? In deep respect to the marital and social system generated, the solution never arrives and in an effort to find ends only in a unstoppable reaction. Most of the times it is the settling nature of the relationship itself. Sometimes solving is not the solution rather to let it go and in another round may be let it go with a word or two.

There is a music being played on by the guests which turns into a soothing and annoying effect based on how interrupting and accompanying it becomes for a scene. When Kym shouts asking when they would take a break, we wish they do. Family members are nuts and that includes every one. The past of Kym might not be regular affair for many but the affection been let down and driving into this teenage childishness would be an expected drama. In this the immediate incision of characters females becomes the prime suspect which they are but we men sometimes need that jolt to react a bit. It is a beautiful film about the wild randomness of sorrow, pain, love and marriage.

1 comment:

vani said...

I didn't enjoy this movie. The background music was nauseating!