License to Wed

I know that watching movies sometimes involves a certain about of suspended disbelief, but this movie would require a lobotomy.

Robin Williams plays Reverend Frank, the man in charge of preparing Sadie (Mandy Moore) and Ben (John Krasinski) for holy matrimony. Ben wanted to elope to the Caribbean, but Sadie’s always dreamed of getting married in the family church, and to do so, they have to pass Reverend Frank’s marriage prep course.

Now, let’s take a minute to appreciate the absurdity of an unmarried man assuming any kind of authority on the subject. I mean, really. But Reverend Frank’s particular brand of marriage counselling is made just for movies. It involves ridiculous group activities and the deliberate baiting of in-laws. This is why we say in my business that no counselling is preferable to pastoral counselling. They don’t know what they’re doing, they push the god agenda above anything sane or healthy, and they’re grossly unqualified. Frank is all of these, yet the Sadie blindly accepts everything he says, because he’s her beloved minister. And that might be fine if this was a satire, but it’s not. It’s just a vehicle for Robin Williams to shock and awe – say all the naughty things that a man of the cloth most definitely should not. Sadie doesn’t blink an eye when he bugs their apartment, asks her what she likes in bed, has her drive into traffic blind-folded. Nope, just normal pre-wedding stuff, nothing to see here!

Are there a couple of chuckles to be had? Sure there are. It’s Robin Williams. But to be honest, it looks like a much better time in the blooper reels than in the film itself. On the plus side, the last 20 minutes of the film are a commercial for the Sandals resort in Ocho Rios, Jamaica, so at least everyone got tan while making this piece of crap (the same one that Michael Scott visited in The Office; there are 4 series regulars in this film, and director Ken Kwapis directed several episodes). I am 100% certain that John Krasinski hates that this is on his resume, and he regrets even more saying “Do you wanna walk the midget?” It may have been 2007, but that was never okay.

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