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Rachel Getting Married

A 2008 drama film directed by Jonathan Demme.

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jewish family being kvetchy is more like it

  • Jun 13, 2009
  • by
Jonathan Demme's latest may boast an award-nominated performance by Anne Hathaway but gets a little too confessional for my tastes. Self revelation is a good thing as long as it reveals--not retards the flow of a film.

Demme's camera drops right in on this Long Island family as the oldest daughter is marrying the man of her dreams in a slightly unconventional ceremony.  During this time spent with the touchy, highly combustible personalities we meet Rachel's sister Kim(Hathaway), her nebbish of a dad(Bill Irwin), her cold starchy mother(Debra Winger) and her too warm, too wise stepmother(Anna Deavere Smith), among others.  Now see a lot of interesting faces in this film and hear lots of interesting words but the words don't teach us much about these people. Nor does Demme's arty but eventually self-conscious jumpy 'naturalistic' camera work.

What does reveal some of their crises are little touches, like Winger's character unable to let her daughters hold her or need her.  There is a tumult of guilt and pain in this one gesture that is so poignant.  Or Hathaway's eyes when she realizes she's been excluded yet again. Or Irwin's quiet need to win at something as he stacks the dishwasher in a record time.  These are the things that harken back to classic filmmaking before films had sound.  This is what makes it all worthwhile.

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More Rachel Getting Married reviews
Quick Tip by . September 19, 2013
romantic emotional, love, relationship, not easy, while we still try make it be happier!
review by . July 22, 2009
Take a look at the star ratings! I've never seen such a curve, with twice as many one-stars as any other number, and with such rhapsody versus such vehemence in the reviews. You'd think it was a book about global warming, from such agonistic writing.    I can understand both sides here. "Rachel Getting Married" was in no way entertainment. Even my wife, who for once didn't fall asleep in the middle of a movie she'd rented herself, said she was 'glad she'd seen it' but wouldn't …
review by . February 15, 2009
Short Attention Span Summary (SASS):     1. Kym (Anne Hathaway) gets out of rehab, just as ...   2. ... her sister Rachel's getting married   3. Kym immediately starts making waves as she does her best impression of "normal" within a dysfunctional group.   4. What the heck's up with the bridegroom (Tunde Adebimpe) and those gawd-awful glasses? I know we're trying for "regular" people here, but no self-respecting brother's gonna be caught dead in …
review by . April 06, 2009
Still dealing with her emotional angst, Kym (Anne Hathaway) is sprung from rehab for the weekend, to attend the wedding of her sister Rachel (Rosemarie DeWitt).     When she appears at the pre-nuptial events, Kym faces a host of demons - the least of which are memories of past drama and disappointments. As she wends her way through the emotional debris and faces the anger, hostility and sheer resentments of family members and friends, Kym discovers that forgiveness does not come …
review by . May 17, 2009
Watching this movie was difficult for me. On the one hand, it's interesting to see a 'take' on how a family copes with addiction and tragedy. I happen to know from personal experience.    Some of the characters were o-kay for stereotypes, but as genuine reflections? Not so much.    Especially Anne Hathaway's character.    If you've EVER dealt with an addict or a recovering one (especially early on), they are no where near as 'thinking' …
review by . March 22, 2009
I had heard about this movie and figured I would enjoy it but wow, just wow! This movie was great, I would definitely call it eclectic. The group of people in this movie were amazing, from the main actors to the wedding party guests to all the musicians it was just great. Made me wish I was part of this diverse group of people, it was just awesome to see.    For awhile I was bothered by some of the background information that was only hinted at about Kym's background but then …
review by . March 21, 2009
posted in Movie Hype
Several reviewers describe this film as painful to watch - and the subject matter is painful, but I found it fascinating, both because of the high level of the performances and because of the exceptionally strong camera work. I was also very impressed by the fact that the interracial marriage that gives the film its title was never made into an issue -- while there is definitely still room for films that address the various forms of prejudice (racial and otherwise) that continue to have strong roots …
review by . March 14, 2009
RACHEL GETTING MARRIED proved to be an entry card for Anne Hathaway's Oscar nomination, and while she turns in a strong performance, there is really very little else to recommend this film so unlike the work of Jonathan Demme. Written by Jenny Lumet, the story of a dysfunctional family on the weekend of the marriage of daughter Rachel (Rosemarie DeWitt) being upturned by the arrival of daughter Kym (Hathaway) on temporary leave from a rehab center and the clashes that occur from this planned happy …
About the reviewer
Darryl Clark ()
Ranked #786
i'm just a nice young man--not too young and--not too nice!    i'm also terribly original but i can say with pride i steal from the best. rather than draw this profile section out, … more
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About this movie


Rachel Getting Married is a 2008 drama film directed by Jonathan Demme, and starring Anne Hathaway, Rosemarie DeWitt, Bill Irwin and Debra Winger. The film was released in the U.S. to select theaters on October 3, 2008. The film opened the 65th Venice International Film Festival. The film also opened in Canada's Toronto Film Festival on September 6, 2008. Hathaway was nominated for Academy Award for Best Actress for her role, but lost to Kate Winslet in The Reader.
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Genre: Drama
DVD Release Date: March 10, 2009
Runtime: 113 minutes
Studio: Sony Pictures Classics

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