5 Movies to Watch the Week of Your Wedding

Amidst all the craziness and, if you are like me, puking from a stomach flu, of the week leading up to your wedding, you think you won’t have time to watch 5 movies or any movies (or write a blog about movies). But you will, at 4 a.m., when you wake up worried about whether or not you remembered to write a note for a gift or being just plain excited as hell. The wedding week is filled with insomnia, whatever the reason may be. So after you’ve caught up on “Scandal”, here are five films about weddings that that will make you laugh, cry, and maybe help you get back to sleep for a few hours (you need your beauty sleep!).

#1 “Bridesmaids”

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How could this not be the first movie you watch before your wedding? Not only does it contain one of the funniest scenes ever to take place on an airplane (“I am Mrs. Iglesias”) but it is a great movie about friendship. And it is a reminder about how important it is to maintain those friendships during the whole process (especially in the week before, because y’all I would have died without my maid of honor) and how sane your friends will keep you and sometimes how insane they will drive you. It’s also a great way to make you feel better about an hiccup you’ve had in any of your wedding events. Sure your dress might have been hiked up inside your underwear during your bridal shower, but did your maid of honor have an epic meltdown and try to crush a giant cookie? Bonus eye candy in the adorable Chris O’Dowd (Yes, you are getting married but as my mother says “Just because I’m not hungry doesn’t mean I can’t look at the menu.”)

#2 “Father Of The Bride”

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Just the first one because the second one is about a baby, and we aren’t there yet (or maybe ever). This is a great movie about the family side of it. It is a sweet, funny reminder about what some of your family (especially dad) might be feeling about this big day. Steve Martin reminds me a bit of my own father in this movie, especially in the grocery store scene, ripping hot dog buns out of packaging because “George Banks is not going to take it any more”.  It puts a lot of those budget arguments in perspective too.

#3 “Steel Magnolias”

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I feel like this is probably mandatory viewing in the South before your wedding. There is no Southern girl that cannot recite at least the first scene by heart (“My reception! My reception! Ferns, dancing, tons of people! Every pink flower west of the Mississippi. Wedding cake in the dining room and the groom’s cake… Hidden in the carport?”). The movie only begins with a wedding, almost to remind you that there is a life after your wedding, as Shelby says to Clairee, “there are still good times to be had!”. But the wedding is the catalyst for everything else that happens afterwards to a certain degree, all the happy and the sad. This classic is also a good look at the mother and daughter relationship that often gets strained during the stressful planning process. Obviously Shelby and M’Lynn don’t agree on too much with her wedding…except the groom’s cake (“It’s awful!”), or her life choices, but that’s life. Also, if you’re worried about any of the choices you made fashion or decor wise you can take solace that your ceremony venue probably doesn’t look “like it’s been hosed down in Pepto Bismol”. Unless that’s your thing….

#4 “Four Weddings and A Funeral”

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A rom com told a bit from the guests’ point of view, you can almost get a whole different perspective of your wedding. Sure, this might be the most significant day of the your life, but for some people, even though they love you dearly (or maybe in secret), this is just another wedding they will go to in their life. Your guests are people with problems, lives, loves, and jobs. Remember they have taken this time and spent money to come and be with you and your spouse to be…not that this should make you feel pressure, just that you should remember how amazing it is that all these people want to celebrate the beginning of your lives together when they might be dealing with tons of other bullshit. Bonus eye candy with 90’s floppy haired Hugh Grant bumbling his way into Andie MacDowell’s heart….and our’s.

#5 “The Wedding Singer”

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Another movie full of fashion do’s and don’ts (mostly don’ts), this fun rom com has a great soundtrack and the adorable Barrymore/Sandler pairing. The wedding from the staff’s point of view almost, the movie shows Adam Sandler in various states of sanity singing at weddings (and falling in love with Drew Barrymore).  If nothing else, this movie might make you happy that you chose a DJ.

Bonus: “Inglorious Basterds”

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Full disclosure: this is what I watched when I was sick this week. It’s long so you can doze off and still wake up knowing what is happening. No wedding related reasoning behind it, it’s just, who doesn’t love Brad Pitt killing Nazis?

Father of the Bride

I couldn’t really decide the best way to pay tribute to my dad, so this is sort of two blogs in one.

“FORCE FIELD”

My sister got married when I was 19. I remember dancing with him at her wedding and promising that I wouldn’t get married for a long time and it wouldn’t be a big affair…..I kept one of those promises.

Honestly? I’ve got a bone to pick with my dad. I don’t think it would have been so difficult for me to find the right guy if he hadn’t been such an outstanding model of what a man should be. Not just a man in a marriage and a man as a father, but a man as a human being. Because of my father, I expected the man I marry to be strong, stable, reliable, funny, intelligent and giving.

Believe it or not, it was a lot to ask of all the myriad of jerks and hipsters that I dated in my 20’s. In fact, I probably went out of my way to avoid guys like my dad in an attempt to not be like my mother (see Mother’s Day post). But in the back of my mind I knew it was inevitable. Like my sister, a mini version of my grandmother, married a not so mini version of my grandfather (my brother-in-law clocks in at 6’5), my eventual marriage would be Jackie and Dave part two.

My dad always made me feel safe. I looked for my mom’s approval first in a lot of things I did in my life. But I looked to my dad for the final nod. Not because of some patriarchal thing in my family. If anything our family was a matriarchy, with my mother and grandmother as very strong forces in my sister and I’s life. No, I looked to my dad because not only was he able to look at everything logically and unemotionally (unlike my mother and I) but because he just has this air about him that makes everything feel like whatever he said to do was the right thing, the best thing. Even the unsafe things I chose to do. (The unsafe things I chose to TELL him about at least).

There is this great quote that I post every Father’s Day on Facebook, where he is thankfully not a member, in his honor that is the perfect tribute to everything he did for me.

“There’s a look little girls have who are adored by their fathers,’ Bea said. ‘It’s that facial expression of being totally impervious to the badness of the world. If they can keep that look into their twenties, they’re pretty much okay, they’ve got a force field around them.”

—Maile Meloy, Both Ways Is the Only Way I Want It

 

“WILLIE, MICKEY, AND THE DUKE”

Every relationship has a language and my dad and I speak baseball. My father loves America’s past time with such a passion. And my sister and my mother never really loved it. But I fell in love at some point when I was 7 or 8. My father would take us to ball games on every family vacation and he and I would sit and keep score while my mother and sister would sit bored eating hot dogs. My sister was the athlete of the family but I played softball. My dad coached me until I was 13 until coaching teenage girls became too much. But I kept playing until I graduated high school. After high school when I went away to London my dad and I would talk, not about what I was doing or what was going on at home, but we would talk about baseball. When I was so lonely in my first year in New York I would call my dad on Sunday mornings when I knew my mother wasn’t home to ask all her questions about my life (I’m still broke, sad and tired) but we would talk about baseball. When I first started dating my fiance…..my dad and I talked baseball instead. But when it really mattered, when I was faced with some pretty big decision in my life, I could always call on a Sunday morning and talk it out, and then talk baseball. It’s kind of appropriate that Father’s Day is on a Sunday.

When I was a kid, my dad had this cassette that I played until it broke, “Baseball’s Greatest Hits”. It had Abbot and Costello’s “Who’s on First” and songs about baseball greats like Mickey Mantle, Joe DiMaggio, Jackie Robinson and my dad’s favorite, Say Hey Willie Mays. It had a few general songs about baseball and one song called “A Dying Cub Fan’s Last Request”. As a Cub fan it hits home “to the home of the brave, the land of the free and the door mat of the National League”. And to my father, it was a hilarious song. We listened to it all the time.  My sister and my mom thought it was weird and morbid how much we loved this song. So when I told him I was getting married, the first decision we made was to dance to that song at my wedding. Before I booked a band, caterer, found a dress, found a venue or anything, we had the song…..now we just have to get the band to play it.

 

 

Becky and Dad 1990

(Side note: My mother is the photographer here and while she is a multi-talented…photography is not one of them)