Actor/writer Michael Ian Black is known for his appearance on TV series such as "Reaper", "The State", "Reno 911', "Ed" and most recently on the series "Backwash".
Known for his comedy, Black had the opportunity to write and direct his first romantic comedy feature film "Wedding Daze" starring Jason Biggs ("American Pie" films, "Loser") and Isla Fisher ("Wedding Crashers", "Rango", "Confessions of a Shopaholic").
The 2006 film features Biggs as the protagonist Anderson. A person who is very much in love with his girlfriend Vanessa (played by Audra Blaser), a young woman who Anderson considers "perfect".
So, what best than to give her the perfect proposal for marriage to show his love for her.
Unfortunately, for Anderson, his plan is to dress up as Cupid and visit her at the restaurant to propose to her. His best friend Ted (played by Michael Weston) can't believe what Anderson is about to do and disagrees with his plan and thinks it is embarrassing but for Anderson, he feels that he knows Vanessa and its the best way to propose to her.
While both argue outside the restaurant on who is right and who is wrong, Vanessa is being schmoozed by the waiter Morty (played by Mark Consuelos) and you can tell that Vanessa is starting to become quite interested in him.
Meanwhile, Anderson wins the argument and goes to propose to Vanessa. Shocked by the proposal, Vanessa is so happy that she has a heart attack and dies.
From that moment on, Anderson is a mess and one-year later, he is seen as a much bigger mess. Everywhere around him is something that reminds him of his dead girlfriend and he can't get over her.
One day, his friend Ted asks him to join him and grab a bit to eat a restaurant. And Ted tells him bluntly that he has to get over Vanessa and move on.
Anderson said he can't because she's so perfect.
But Ted insists that he take a look at other women and start over. Ted looks around and all he sees are older women that smoke and then catches the eye of a waitress in the restaurant.
Anderson tells him that if he does go out with a girl and gives it a try, will he get off his back. Ted agrees.
So, the waitress goes to take their order and the first thing that comes out of Anderson's mouth is "Will you marry me?" and surprisingly the waitress says "yes!" and accepts his proposal.
The story then showcases the waitress named Katie (played by Isla Fisher).
The story goes back a few days before the proposal and Katie is dating a man who is very feminine. Her parents Lois (played by Joanna Gleason) and Stuart (played by Matt Maloy) love him but Katie is not sure if she loves him at all. In fact, her boyfriend proposes to her and she tells him that "she'll think about it".
The next day, her mother can't believe that she is not accepting the proposal from a perfect guy. Confused about her boyfriend, she goes to her father Smitty (played by Joe Pantoliano) who is in prison, and tells her about her boyfriend's proposal and how she is not happy about it.
She goes back to work and tries to convince herself that she is happy about the marriage proposal and tells her friends and co workers Jane (played by Heather Goldenhersh) and Matador (played by Ebon Moss-Bachrach) about how she feels and Matador is quick to tell her that he doesn't like her current boyfriend.
And then we see the proposal once again, in which Katie says "yes" to Anderson.
Both agree to take things slow and live with each other. But still, Anderson feels guilty and starts thinking about Vanessa not approving of his decision to marry Katie. When Katie asks who is the woman that is pictured in his room, he tells her that it's Vanessa, a photo frame model and the reason why he is pictured with her is that he is a former model for a picture frame company. Katie doesn't question it and believes him.
But both spend time with each other and enjoy each other's company.
Meanwhile, Anderson introduces Katie to his parents, Katie introduces Anderson to her parents and sure enough, the parents don't agree with their children's choice of who they are going to marry. But Katie learns from Anderson's mother Betsy (played by Margo Martindale) that Vanessa is actually Anderson's girlfriend who passed away and is distraught that Anderson had lied to her.
The two get into a huge fight and it looks as if their brief relationship is over and the marriage is off.
And while they spend time away from each other for a brief time, both Anderson and Katie realize, they are actually falling for each other and want to get married.
And now with the help of Ted and Katie's friends, everyone takes off to Atlantic City for Anderson and Katie's wedding but in the process, Ted takes a car from the car lot that he works at and tells his boss it's for a test drive (and because he hasn't returned it, his boss calls the cops) and Katie's father has broken out of prison (and the cops are after him). To make things worse, Katie's former boyfriend has followed Anderson and Katie and wants to fight Anderson.
With all these obstacles, will Anderson and Katie ever get married?
"Wedding Daze" is presented in 1080p High Definition (widescreen 1:85:1). Picture quality for the film is quite vibrant, black levels are pretty good considering this is a catalog title and I detected no artifacting, no edge enhancement on the video. For the most part, fans of the film should be pleased with the picture quality and vibrant colors.
AUDIO & SUBTITLES:
"Wedding Daze" is presented in English 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio, Spanish 5.1 DTS and French 5.1 DTS. The film is primarily dialogue and music driven. Dialogue is clear and understandable as is the music coming from the front and center channels. There are some moments where the surround channels are used. When Isla shoots a gun into the ceiling or when Matador steps on the brakes of his car, you can hear the surround channels being utilized.
But for this romantic comedy, it's a front and center channel driven soundtrack.
Subtitles are in English SDH, Spanish and French.
"Wedding Daze" comes with an alternate opening sequence and two deleted scenes.
"Wedding Daze" is a romantic comedy that has a few jokes that will make you laugh and has potential to be entertaining. Somehow, during its final half hour, it becomes uninspired and loses its humor and eventually becomes too kitschy for anyone to really enjoy.
As someone who grew up watching Jason Biggs on the "American Pie" films and also have been entertained by actress Isla Fisher in a few of her films, the idea to have a film that revolves around a shotgun wedding is sure to bring some laughs, especially with Michael Ian Black writing and directing the film.
First, the good. The good is that the premise of the story of two individuals trying out a relationship and getting married, despite not spending any time together is quite interesting and can be entertaining. Both characters, Anderson and Katie are normal people, it's just those that are around them are not.
And the storyline that is built around those characters is pretty much out of left-field and very crazy.
Anderson's father is hardcore into sex and gives Anderson his cock ring as a gift for his marriage, while his mother threatens Katie that she will cut her if she brings up Vanessa's name. As for Katie's mother, she is married to a shy Jewish man who has built a Jewnicorn and wants to make it to a toyline, while her mother still thinks about having mad, passionate sex with her ex-husband.
Throw in Katie's co-workers, Jane who wants to be in the circus and throws knives while Matador is just a strange individual.
Needless to say, there are some funny moments in the film as Katie tries to be sexy for her fiance, tasting Anderson's toothpaste dribble around his mouth and he accidentally spitting it out on her eye and temporary blinding her. I couldn't help but laugh.
But from there on, things become too kitschy as Michael Ian Black somehow changes the pacing and has everything focus on the group going to jail, breaking out of jail and having the police after them. It worked great during the Laurel & Hardy and Buster Keaton silent years but to focus a romantic comedy so much on it, especially for its climax, unfortunately instead of peaking, the storyline goes downhill and never recovers.
Actually, I had more fun watching the ending credits with the talent having fun and messing around than what was taking place in the final 20 minutes of the actual storyline of the film.
"Wedding Daze" is a Blu-ray release that features vibrant and solid PQ and the lossless audio soundtrack is about what I would expect from a romantic comedy. Special features are few with only an alternative opening sequence and two deleted scenes, all three which I'm glad were cut out of the film.
Needless to say, I'm sure Jason Biggs and Isla Fisher fans will have fun watching the film but while the film has its fun and charming moments, much of those moments happen earlier on and the storyline doesn't get any better.
Overall, "Wedding Daze" is popcorn romantic comedy that is not the best, nor is it the worst but its storyline suffers from lackadaisical writing and an uninspiring way to end the film that it comes up short.