Loosely based on the long-running off-Broadway play of the same name My Big Gay Italian Wedding is one of those affectionate feel-good comedies that are perfect for a date night. Well, as marriage is involved, maybe not for a first date.
Antonio (Diego Abatantuono ) and Paolo (Salvatore Esposito ) are two ex-pat Italians happily living together in Berlin and the night before Antonio is about to make his annual Easter trip home to visit his parents, he gets down on one knee and pops the question to a delighted Paolo. Paolo insists that they should now go on the visit together, but Antonio is reluctant to agree as he has still hasn’t come out to his parents.
So off they trot to the picturesque mountain-top small town with their two zany roommates in tow (It is a screwball comedy after all) and Antonio’s mother immediately supports her son’s intentions. She insists on throwing a lavish wedding right there in town but lays down two conditions for that to happen. Firstly, Antonio’s father the Town’s Mayor should officiate and secondly Paolo’s mother should be there too. That’s when the problems start as his father refuses to have anything to do with his son’s wedding, and Paolo’s mother has not spoken to her son for three years ever since he came out to her.
This is a ‘fairytale’ after all so we have no illusions that everything will not work out in the end, but first they must go through a great deal of silliness involving a camp Reality TV star wedding planner, and even the hijinks of the one girl that Paolo spent a drunken night in his childhood, and who still carries a very large torch for him. There is even a touch of La Cage Folles to the plot when everyone thinks Paolo’s mother will be a no-show.
Directed and co-written by Alessandro Genovesi who should be applauded not just for his first-class cast but also for his attention to the smallest detail and making it with such high production standards which are so often neglected in indie popular comedies like this.
Actually, we are still reeling from the shock of how much we liked this, but then you would need a heart of stone not to absolutely love the over-the-top ending which has to be one of the campiest finales we have seen for years.