Wedding Daze

Alternate Titles:
The Pleasure of Your Company;
The Next Girl I See

Michael Ian Black

Following a marriage proposal with a funeral probably wasn’t the dream Anderson (Jason Biggs) had imagined while he popped the question dressed as cupid but that’s exactly what happens when, instead of offering a reply, his girlfriend hits the floor at the beginning of writer/director Michael Ian Black’s feature film debut. Now on its third title, Wedding Daze catches up with the devastated Anderson one year later who has spent the better time of that period mourning on the couch of his apartment without regard to hygiene or cleanliness. Annoyed with yet another conversation about his deceased would-be fiancĂ©e, Anderson’s friend Ted (Michael Weston) takes him out for breakfast and urges him to get back into the dating game. Unemployed and depressed, Anderson doesn’t want to go through the hassle of dating once again or make any grand overtures such as the one who killed his ex. Thus, on a whim, he proposes to the next girl he sees—diner waitress Katie (Isla Fisher) who, much to everyone’s surprise accepts his offer after Black introduces Katie in a humorous flashback of the events from the evening before when her picture perfect boyfriend William asks Katie to marry him during an evening of charades. Katie’s mom Lois (Joanna Gleason) still angry at Katie’s biological father, the imprisoned Smitty (Joe Pantoliano) pushes her daughter to accept the offer from William whom audiences already suspect may in fact be gay and along with visiting her dad in jail and consulting her two best aspiring circus performer friends, Katie jumps at the chance to escape William’s offer by accepting that of a stranger. The two decide to go for a walk and talk things over, not sure when to call one another’s bluff and soon arrange for Katie to move in with Anderson in preparation for the nuptials that predictably shock his overly amorous and slightly deranged parents (Edward Herrman and Margo Martindale) as well as the rest of Katie’s family including her faithful stepfather who has turned their basement into a Jewish toy shop where he creates stuffed animals (with names like the “Jewnicorn”) and a hula-hoop he calls a “Jewlahoop” that haven’t yet caught on with the rest of the toy buying public.

Despite an ending that seems to have been taken right out of Bringing Up Baby, which finds nearly everyone in jail and a few predictable speed bumps along the way, Black’s originality keeps us watching even though there were times with the inexplicably trendy over reliance on American Pie like crass humor that really bogged it down. Obviously the writer/director has enough material with an insanely offbeat cast of characters for several films and at times it feels like he’s trying to force too many subplots and introductions into a small scene, although I found myself surprised by just how much I laughed throughout the movie and predict it will definitely attract viewers on DVD or cable.