"My Big Fat Greek Wedding" puts a lot of Greeks around the funny table. (Or is that a lot of funny Greeks around the table?) It's not art, this movie. But it's much more amusing than you'd expect. Clearly, Nia Vardalos (full name: Antonia Eugenia Vardalos), who stars in the movie and wrote it, not only grew up Greek, she took notes.
The movie has something else, too: a tremendously sweet spirit. There is so much good will here, you are charmed as much as tickled into laughing.
In "Wedding," she's Toula Portokalos, a woman with one screaming problem: She's "over 30 and way past my expiration date." Which is not good. According to Toula, all Greek women are here on Earth to "marry Greek boys, make Greek babies and feed everyone till the day we die."
Every time her father Gus (Michael Constantine) looks at her, he tells Toula how "old" she's looking. It's time to find a man. She does. Not a Greek man, maybe. But a good-hearted WASP hunk named Ian Miller (John Corbett).
"End it now," says Toula's mother, Maria (Lainie Kazan).
"But I love him," counters Toula.
"Toula," says Maria. "Eat something."
-- Desson Howe, Weekend