Shotgun Wedding is silly fun all the way
Shotgun Wedding, now streaming on Amazon Prime, about a destination wedding in an island in the Philippines, is one of those lowbrow entertainers which purports to be unadulterated fun. What we see is what we get, nothing more, nothing less.
In a LOL sequence, the luscious thought vacuous Jennifer Lopez playing a bride-to-be is taken hostage by pirates. As the crooks drive her to an unknown destination she starts up a conversation with them, asks for a smoke, and burns their hair with the tip of the cancer stick.
You really can’t dislike a film so nakedly naïve about its intentions to have fun and raise laughter. Shotgun Wedding, now streaming on Amazon Prime, about a destination wedding in an island in the Philippines, is one of those lowbrow entertainers which purports to be unadulterated fun. What we see is what we get, nothing more, nothing less.
The flighty film takes potshots at the super-rich and super-privileged , but it’s certainly not a critique on affluence. It does warn you, though, that if you have wealth beyond the digestible level, you can be a target of avaricious plunderers. Having gotten the “message”(ha ha) out of the way, Lopez and her screen bridegroom Tom(Josh Duhamel, who replaced the tainted Armie Hammer) give us, and themselves, the time of our lives.
Shotgun Wedding is the hyper destination wedding where maybe, just maybe, the events managers went a little too far. I almost expected the whole pirates’ siege angle to be a hoax entertainment for the hedonistic guests. How many tequilas can you have while you watch the sun, and others, go down on the beach? Perhaps the pirates were a part of reality entertainment at the wedding. You never know how far the decadent bored rich would go for entertainment. But when the laughs didn’t translate into a gag-confession, I was like, ‘Okay then, this is supposed to be a serious siege.’
Even on the level of a siege story—Diehard goes rogue—Shotgun Wedding is a barrel of bristling bacchanalia. Not being a diehard Jennifer Lopez fan, especially when she doesn’t sing(be warned: she doesn’t, until the end-credits where like a true trouper she joins in the chorus of revelers) I was happy to note that the supporting cast is rock-solid.
I know Jennifer Coolidge as the groom’s mother with her busty antics is a sureshot scenestealer. But I have realized in recent times that this is the only role Ms Coolidge can play, and good luck to her with that.
I found Sonia Braga as the bride’s mother priceless. Once upon a time, Ms Braga was young and fiery. I am happy to announce that the fire has still not gone. Cheech Marin as Ms Braga’s estranged husband , and Callie Hernandez as the bride’s sister seem drunk on the debauchery but not so much as to forget that the comic timing is not to be lost.
When the true villains of the siege are revealed, I was appalled at the tackiness of the screenplay. The plot moves not so much on its volition as by auto-navigation creating spaces in the pretty landscape for lights camera and action. Logic and other essential tools of storytelling be damned. Go into this with zero expectations, and you will come away with some chuckles .
Subhash K Jha is a Patna-based journalist. He has been writing about Bollywood for long enough to know the industry inside out.
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