Dancing Zorbas

My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2

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Director: Kirk Jones

Cast: Nia Vardalos, John Corbett, John Stamos, Rita Wilson, Michael Constantine, Lainie Kazan, Joey Fatone, Alex Wolff, Elena Kampouris, Andrea Martin

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Canadian Greek actress Nia Vardalos has made a small dent on contemporary cinema with her range of comedies including the hit My Big Fat Greek Wedding, Connie and Carla and My Life in Ruins.

Now after an extended break between the first film made in 2002, Vardalos follows up the smash hit with the belated sequel My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2 about an extended Greek family set in Chicago and produced by Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson.

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My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2 follows the raucous family of Toula a retrenched travel agent who has to work in her father’s restaurant Dancing Zorba’s and even gets her pouty teenage daughter Paris played by newcomer Elena Kampouris to assist her. Paris is on the brink of finishing high school and must soon choose a suitable college for her tertiary education.

Naturally Toula’s family all want Paris to remain in Chicago and study at North-Western University, while her hilarious grandfather Gus, wonderfully played by Michael Constantine only wants his granddaughter to marry a Greek boy.

The wedding plot which the title refers to does not involve Paris although initially audiences are led to believe that, but rather Toula’s parents Gus and her mother Maria exuberantly played by Lainie Kazan, who after attending the Greek orthodox church one Sunday discover that they were never officially married when Gus forgot to sign his name on the marriage certificate.

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Directed by British director Kirk Jones responsible for such hit comedies as Waking Ned Devine and Everybody’s Fine, My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2 is a hilarious and fun filled family film with running jokes about the perils of living with an extended family and also about the importance of rekindling love in one’s own marriage, especially between Toula and her Waspish American husband Ian played by John Corbett (Sex and the City 2, The Burning Plain).

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Look out for a fabulous Andrea Martin (Wag the Dog) as the straight talking Aunt Voula who perceives that Toula’s brother Angelo played by former NSYNC singer Joey Fatone is of a different persuasion.

Nia Vardalos manages to fill the screen with her wide eyed gaze as she continually portrays the overbearing Greek mother Toula trying to help her daughter through the important transition from High School to College, while not making the same mistakes as her own mother Maria. As an inter-generational family comedy, My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2 hits the mark, especially with a lively collection of supporting actors including John Stamos, Rita Wilson, Joey Fatone and Alex Wolff, but certainly not as funny as the original film.

Audiences expecting a sequel get a funny and warm comedy without too many surprises or originality. Perhaps the gap between the two films is too long but then again, that Greek family needed some time to grow. Recommended viewing for extremely light entertainment.

 

 

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