Rachel Getting Married

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Performance

Jonathan Demme delivers another fine pic

by Evelyn Martin on 9/30/2009

Director Jonathan Demme brings to the screen another really fine film. His direction is superb and he extracts really good performances from his cast

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Product Overview

When Kym (Anne Hathaway) returns to the Buchman family home for the wedding of her sister Rachel (Rosemarie DeWitt), she brings a long history of personal crises, family conflict and tragedy along with her. The wedding couple's abundant party of friends and relations have gathered for a joyful weekend of feasting, music and love, but Kym -- with her biting one-liners and flair for bombshell drama -- is a catalyst for long-simmering tensions in the family dynamic. Filled with the rich and eclectic characters that remain a hallmark of Jonathan Demme's films, Rachel Getting Married paints a heartfelt, perceptive and sometimes hilarious family portrait.

Specifications

Studio Sony
SKU 210681237
UPC 043396283343
UPC 14 00043396283343
Format DVD
Release Date 5/15/2012
Rating Rating
Aspect Ratio
Anamorphic Widescreen  1.85:1
Awards
Oscar (2009) Anne Hathaway, Nominee, Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role
Golden Globe (2009) Anne Hathaway, Nominee, Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture - Drama
Independent Spirit (2009) Anne Hathaway, Nominee, Best Female Lead,Jenny Lumet, Nominee, Best First Screenplay,Jonathan Demme, Nominee, Best Director,Neda Armian, et. al., Nominee, Best Feature,Rosemarie DeWitt, Nominee, Best Supporting Female
Screen Actors Guild (2009) Anne Hathaway, Nominee, Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Leading Role
Image Award (2009) Jenny Lumet, Nominee, Outstanding Writing in a Motion Picture (Theatrical or Television),Rachel Getting Married, Nominee, Outstanding Independent Motion Picture
Venice Film Festival (2008) Jonathan Demme, Nominee, Golden Lion Award
Reviews
ReviewSource ReelViews
Review Filmmakers love weddings. The reasons are obvious: so many characters, so much potential for drama and romance, so many things that can go wrong. Weddings are also events that most people, in one way or another (whether as a guest or a participant) can identify with. Rachel Getting Married, Jonathan Demme's contribution to this field, uses a wedding and its attendant chaos as the backdrop for a character-based story about a young woman struggling to remain clean after emerging from rehab. Told in a simple, spare style that imitates Lars von Trier's Dogma initiative, Rachel Getting Married is anything but simple in the way it explores the complexities and contradictions of the lead character...Jonathan Demme has elected to produce Rachel Getting Married using minimalist techniques. The cameras are, for the most part, hand-held and many of the shots are lengthy. The lighting is all natural and there is no incidental music. At times, it feels like a home-made video of a wedding and its preparations. The film occasionally dwells on little things, like a five-minute tug-of-war between Rachel's father and fiance about who is more adept at loading a dishwasher. The goal of including all of these seemingly irrelevant details is to anchor the film's reality, but there are times when there's a little too much of this and it threatens to distract viewers from the central drama...Movies about weddings tend to highlight quirky characters and resort to facile resolutions. Neither flaw is evident here. The participants are real and the unanswered questions echo what life often provides. Rachel Getting Married is not a happy movie, but neither does it wallow in unrelieved bleakness. There's an element of hope in the ending and there are moments of understated humor sprinkled throughout. For those who enjoy character studies that explore the nature of pain and guilt, this is a solid drama.
ReviewDate
ReviewPage
Reviewer James Berardinelli
ReviewRating 8
ReviewSource Chicago Sun-Times
Review The rules say that critics don't discuss movies after screenings. After I saw Jonathan Demme's "Rachel Getting Married" for the second time, however, a friend asked: "Wouldn't you love to attend a wedding like that?" In a way, I felt I had. Yes, I began to feel absorbed in the experience. A few movies can do that, can slip you out of your mind and into theirs...Rachel (Rosemarie DeWitt) does indeed get married. There is an engrossing plot involving her sister Kym (Anne Hathaway). But I believe the film's deep subject is the marriage itself: How it unfolds, who attends, the nature of the ceremony, what it has to observe about how the concept of "family" embraces others, and how our multicultural society is growing comfortable with itself...Demme's achievement is shared with the original screenplay by Jenny Lumet. This is her first writing credit, but the story might have felt like second nature to her. She is descended from artists; her grandparents on her mother's side were the singer Lena Horne and the jazz legend Louis Jordan Jones; her grandparents on her father's side were Baruch and Eugenia Lumet, an actor-director and an actress. Her father is director Sidney Lumet, and her mother, writer Gail Lumet Buckley. The apple did not fall far from those trees. I don't have to be told that her life has included countless gatherings of the nature of Rachel's wedding...Jenny Lumet has an older sister, sound editor Amy Lumet. That's interesting. Is the film autobiographical? I have no way of knowing. Demme demonstrates something he shares with Altman: He likes to be surrounded by his own extended family. The gray-bearded man who performs the ceremony is his cousin, the Rev. Robert Castle, subject of Demme's doc "Cousin Bobby" (1992). And so on. Apart from the story, which is interesting enough, "Rachel Getting Married" is like the theme music for an evolving new age.
ReviewDate
ReviewPage
Reviewer Roger Ebert
ReviewRating 10
Features
DVD, Widescreen, Aspect Ratio 1.85:1, Dolby Digital (5.1), Dolby Surround Sound, French, Dubbed & Subtitled, No Longer Produced
Product Attributes
Video Format DVD
Quotes
David Edelstein, New York Magazine I've never seen a movie with this mixture of fullness and desolation. Rachel Getting Married is a masterpiece.
Deborah Young, The Hollywood Reporter A film whose lightness of touch rides a wave of family conflict to perfectly balance smiles and tears.
Elizabeth Weitzman, New York Daily News A film that is both deceptively modest and deeply resonant.
Owen Gleiberman, Entertainment Weekly A triumph -- Demme's finest work since "The Silence of the Lambs," and a movie that tingles with life.
Peter Travers, Rolling Stone Jonathan Demme directs his best film in years. Anne Hathaway gives an award-caliber performance. Debra Winger, simply superb.

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Jonathan Demme delivers another fine pic by Evelyn Martin on Sep 30, 2009

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