"A Dysfunctional Family United"
What You Need To Know:
RACHEL GETTING MARRIED comes off as a home movie that is eavesdropping on one week in the life of a turbulent family. There is much foul language and there is one brief scene of depicted sexual relations between Kym and the best man. In the context of a recovery meeting, there is discussion of a higher power, the “serenity prayer” is recited, and there is discussion of God. Kym says she can’t believe in a God who would forgive her for accidentally killing her younger brother. RACHEL GETTING MARRIED is an emotional movie that some older viewers may enjoy, but with careful discernment.
(HH, B, Ab, LLL, V, SS, N, A, DD, MM) Strong humanist worldview of main characters not embracing God mixed with a positive comment by a supporting character about praying and discussion of a “higher power” and God in recovery group, but protagonist doubts God’s forgiveness; 25 obscenities and 27 profanities; two women slap each other; one brief scene of depicted sexual relations between couple that have just met and a reference to oral sex; woman in bathtub, but remains covered up; drinking of wine; much smoking and discussion of drug addiction in 12 steps environment; and, a negative mother figure and a troubled family on multiple levels.
RACHEL GETTING MARRIED is the story of Kym, who comes home for her sister Rachel’s wedding after having been in and out of rehab for the past 10 years. The occasion of the wedding causes the family to encounter their dysfunctional issues.
Kym is a recovering drug addict who has a difficult time adjusting to life outside of rehab. She dominates the conversation causing her sister Rachel to be jealous that her big wedding day is overshadowed by Kym coming out of rehab.
As the story unfolds and relatives arrive, the movie reveals that the source of much of the family’s trouble is that 10 years ago Kym had a car accident while intoxicated, which killed their younger brother. Kym struggles with the guilt of that while her father, sister, mother and stepmother wrestle with the loss as well as forgiveness of Kym.
RACHEL GETTING MARRIED feels very “real,” in that it comes off as a home movie that is eavesdropping on one week in the life of a turbulent family. The camera is hand held, the acting is very restrained yet compelling, and the whole movie is engaging. While the plot is simple, the story remains dramatic as the family, especially the sisters, struggle with their past and their future. Of special note is the music, which is often provided by the wedding musicians practicing.
The directing is very strong with the movie feeling a bit like a reality show and a bit like a documentary. Yet, the characters are very compelling.
There is much foul language and there is one brief scene of depicted sexual relations by Kym and the best man soon after they’ve met. In the context of a 12-step recovery meeting, there is discussion of a higher power, the “serenity prayer” is recited and there is discussion of God. Kym says that she can’t believe in a God who would forgive her for killing her younger brother. Positively, the groom’s mother says that she prayed hard for her child.
Though Rachel never overtly says that she forgives Kym, that is communicated when Kym helps Rachel get ready for the wedding after Kym has confronted their mother over some past issues. There is a theme of hope and going on despite circumstances. However, the characters don’t acknowledge God or see him as the source of true hope.
RACHEL GETTING MARRIED is an emotional movie that some older viewers may enjoy and appreciate, but with careful discernment.