Reviewed by: Patty Moliterno
|Featuring:||Kristen Bell (Marni), Odette Yustman (Joanna), Sigourney Weaver (Aunt Ramona), Betty White (Grandma Bunny), Kristin Chenoweth (Monique Leroux), Jamie Lee Curtis (Gail), Cloris Leachman (Helen), Christine Lakin (Taylor), more »|
|Producer:||Oops Doughnuts Productions, Touchstone Pictures, more »|
“What doesn’t kill you… is going to marry your brother.”
Marni Olsen (played by Kristen Bell) is a successful advertising executive. She is cute, witty and exudes confidence. One would never suspect that underneath that surface is a wounded, shy awkward teenager. At the beginning of the movie, the viewer is led to believe that she has overcome all those feelings and is a better person today. When Marni flies home for her brother Will’s (James Wolk) wedding, we begin to see that teenager all over again. Will is marrying Joanna (Odette Yustman), a sweet, caring nurse and a compassionate volunteer. Joanna (known as JJ in high school) was the girl responsible for tormenting Marni daily. Joanna was head cheerleader; she was smart, funny and liked by everyone.
Joanna is still liked by everyone; Marni’s mom and dad, Gail and Mark (played by Jamie Lee Curtis and Victor Garber), have taken Joanna into their home and already treat her like family. Even Marni’s dog loves Joanna. To add insult to injury, Joanna doesn’t even seem to remember Marni—or does she? When Joanna’s aunt, Ramona (Sigourney Weaver) arrives, the plot is further complicated. Ramona and Gail were friends in high school until something happened which caused them to never talk again.
The language and situations in this film are exceedingly tame. I was surprised how little objectionable content was in this film. There are a few dance scenes where some suggestive moves are made. There are, also, some low cut dresses showing cleavage. Marni’s grandmother Bunny (played by Betty White) makes several sexual comments to men of all ages. Several scenes show people with alcoholic drinks.
There is minor violence—Marni and Joanna get in a fight and throw plates at each other. Ramona and Gail fight and through each other in a pool. A tree house falls apart and injures people. There are several other “slapstick” type scenes.
A reference is made to a “fertility” dance. Mark is using a mind-body connection to lose weight. The term “satan’s spawn” is used. Marni bribes her younger brother Ben to help her in her plot to expose Joanna.
There were several positive aspects of this movie. Gail and Mark are a traditional married couple. Gail is happy being a wife and mother. I never felt like Hollywood was trying to shove an agenda down my throat. In this movie, we see true forgiveness. It, also, shows that people can and do change. We can move past the hurt and experience reconciliation. Gail tells Marni, “Everyone deserves a second chance”.
Watching this movie, I thought how sad it is to try to live in a world without Jesus. Luke 6:28 says “bless those that curse you, pray for those who mistreat you.” Raising children in a Christian home means talking about how we are to treat one another. If we talk to our kids about the bullies and about the kids who are the victims, we can encourage Christ-like behavior. Marni felt all alone. We can teach our children to reach out to the Marni’s in the world. If our kids are the Marni’s, we can support and encourage them to pray for their enemies.
While this movie has some good qualities, it has little entertainment value and becomes horribly predictable. While you might expect a lot from this movie, with a cast of well knowns, you may be expecting too much. There are few laughs. While not a horrible movie, it does seem to be lackluster. My recommendation is to wait for it to come out on DVD.
Violence: Mild / Profanity: Minor / Sex/Nudity: Moderate
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