Bravo! “My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2” is hilarious! Nia Vardalos is a comedy genius! Often a sequel, especially one that pops up 14 years later, is not as good as the first movie and leaves the audience disappointed. This is not the case here! It doesn’t hurt that the original cast with their same comedic chemistry returns. You will laugh, tear up at the heartfelt moments and even cry with laughter! My daughter and I were laughing so hard we were screaming!! We took my mom with us and she loved it too! My Mom is Italian, the Xeni (foreigner) married to my father, the native Greek, also named, Gus! My daughter and I determined that she is a cross between Thea Voula and Yia Yia Maria – so you see, this movie isn’t just for Greeks, most families of European culture can relate to the Portokalos family; that’s what makes this franchise classic!
Watch the official trailer here:
At the conclusion of the original movie, we learned that Ian (John Corbett) and Toula (Nia Vardalos) have a daughter and they couldn’t help but carry on the expectation that she attend Greek School. Now, we meet Paris, (the Miller’s 17-year old daughter, who finds herself smothered by the entire Portokalos extended family.) As is often the case, we find ourselves doing all the things that our parents did to us and Toula is no exception! Though she and Ian do realize that they need to let Paris (Elena Kampouris) make her own choice as to where she will go to college, they make it pretty clear their preference is for her to remain in Chicago.
Her Grandfather, Gus (Michael Constantine), in his true Greek Papou brutally honest nature, tells her that she should not waste her eggs and needs to find a Greek boy to marry, while Yia Yia Maria (Lainie Kazan) reminds her to keep her “poulaki” covered (Greek word for little bird and cutesie slang word for female privates!) Toula understands how it feels to be smothered and realizes that she needs to take a step back and let her little bird fly from the nest. Being a Greek mother of my own 17-year old daughter, one of my favorite quotes from Toula was, “even though I’m taking a step back, I will always be right here.”
As is typical for all Greek families, everyone has their nose in each other’s business and everyone pulls together through good times and bad. Thea Voula (Andrea Martin) is back with her meddling personality and her candid/personal stories which always contain TMI! Ian’s parents are back too and in true Greek fashion have become part of the extended Portokalos family. The entire family has their hand in planning yet another “Big Fat Greek” wedding and it’s fantastic! Rita Wilson shows off her beautiful voice by singing a classic Greek Song at the wedding.
This movie celebrates Greeks, family, and a young girl’s struggle for independence from her Greek family! Ironically, it’s no coincidence that it opens on March 25 – the day all Christians celebrate the Annunciation by the Archangel Gabriel of the Incarnation of Jesus to the Virgin Mary. March 25 is also Greek Independence Day; the day Greeks celebrate Independence from the Turks!
The root of the word “ironically” comes from the Ancient word, εἰρωνεία (eirōneía), which “dissimulation, feigned ignorance.” So, there you go, Nia Vardalos was not ignorant in her decision to open a Big Fat Greek movie on a Big Fat Greek holiday!!
We screened the movie at the Palladium, which was also screening Batman vs. Superman. Even though the Marvel movies are extremely popular, fans came out in droves to see My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2. While the line for the Batman/Superman movie slowly grew, the theater line was over capacity for this movie. Our friends, who arrived a few minutes after us, were turned away. For a while it looked like we weren’t going to make it into the screening either. Even though I’ve been screening and reviewing movies for a long time, my passes are “first come first served.” (@UniversalPictures can you hear me? press passes, PLEASE! ) We had to sit in the second row, which took some adjusting for this far-sighted girl and made for a much bigger and fatter Greek experience!!!
The word “hilarious” comes from the Greek: ἱλαρός (pronounced hilaros,) meaning joyous, cheerful. So, there you go. You will find yourself in a state of hilarity while watching “My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2.” You will leave believing you are Greek. After all we are all descendants of Alexander the Great, aren’t we?! When the movie was over, I heard many people saying, “I wish I was Greek.” So, here’s my unsolicited but freely given advice to you – you MUST see this movie! My advise to Nia Vardalos – don’t let your ink dry – you know we Greeks do everything in three’s, so start writing “3” ASAP, we don’t want to wait another 14 years for a Big Fat New York wedding!!! OPA!
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