The Wedding Plan Screen 8 articles

The Wedding Plan

2016

The Wedding Plan Poster
  • It’s sporadically funny – Michal’s job as the proprietor of a mobile petting zoo offers some snake-based amusement – but pacing issues, dead scenes and an absolute nightmare of a central character ensure that the jokes wear thin... Whereas Fill the Void offered genuine insight into the life of a young woman facing an impossible choice, Through the Wall is too contrived to persuade us of its authenticity, either culturally or emotionally.

  • The late-blooming Israeli filmmaker upturns the traditional convention of marriage as comedic climax by having her jilted heroine go ahead with a planned wedding ceremony and find a new groom along the way. The cornball is leavened with constant questioning of motivations, with lead actor Noa Koler bringing unheralded and unguarded warmth to what could have been a stock oddball lonely hearts.

  • Burshtein plays all of this for laughs in The Wedding Plan, and though her stylistic hand is a bit too heavy for what's a light comedy at heart, the film does have its choice comic moments, most notably the many dates Michal goes on with a series of eccentric suitors, one of whom offers an elaborate rationale for his refusal to look directly into her eyes throughout their dinner together.

  • The American-born Israeli writer-director [Burshtein] walks a fine line, potentially alienating women who view marriage as a choice, not a requirement. What makes the film work is Koler's magnetic performance as Michal, who has screwball energy and a mind of her own.

  • While Burshtein packs in strange and funny scenes—a mother repeatedly fending off Michal’s attempts to let a girl at a birthday party pet a harmless snake is the most deadpan—the film is largely a painful experience. Koler brings extreme honesty, bullheadedness, and impulsivity to her portrayal of Michal, giving us a portrait of a difficult person to like. Tempering these characteristics are the raw emotions of Michal’s sadness, fear of being alone, and recognition of the loneliness in others.

  • Burshtein has crafted a film that’s poignant and funny, smart and unexpected, with a lead actress able to convey a loneliness so vast that it approaches a permanent condition. Without that element, The Wedding Plan would skip off the surface of its own story. Burshtein takes love and happiness very seriously. She knows what loneliness can do. The Wedding Plan, with its beautiful flow between comedy and sentiment, celebrates the pursuit of love, its absurdity, intensity, and power.

  • I am not a religious Jew. Nor do I believe in Hollywood happy endings. Yet I can’t deny my fascination with The Wedding Plan, the second feature by the ultra-Orthodox Israeli director Rama Burshtein. [It's] colloquial and even breezy, while as crammed with signs, portents, and potential readings as a Borough Park book and tchotchke store.

  • "You have a nutty energy," one bemused prospect tells Michal, and that is generally true of this brightly colored, often zany crowdpleaser with sharply written dialogue and a pop soundtrack... Yet Burshtein also unfolds a darker, more introspective undertow to Michal's growing despair of ever finding her beshert.

More Links