A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
Nothing ever seems to be at stake. There are no repercussions for poor choices/actions -- including kidnappings, killings, and more.
Positive Role Models
Definitely no role models here: Characters are all killers, criminals, gangsters, kidnappers, two-timers, etc.
Violence & Scariness
Guns and shooting. Characters shot and killed. Character pummeled with a rock. Bloody face. Burning corpse. Woman kidnapped, tied up, placed in trunk of car.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Kissing, cuddling in bed. Flirting. Partial nudity includes a woman's breasts and bottom and a man's chest.
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Many uses of "f--k" and "f---ing." Also "s--t," "bulls--t," "Jesus Christ" (as an exclamation).
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Products & Purchases
Brief billboards for Coca-Cola and Pepsi (in Pakistan).
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Regular cigarette smoking. Pot smoking. Brief social drinking.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that The Wedding Guest is a crime drama/romance directed by Michael Winterbottom and starring Dev Patel that's set in Pakistan and India. Violent scenes/images include guns and shooting, dead bodies, a man being beaten to death with a rock, a burned body, and a woman being kidnapped and held prisoner. A man and a woman kiss and snuggle in bed. The man is shown shirtless, the woman is briefly topless, and her bare bottom is briefly shown. Strong language includes "f--k," "s--t," and more. Characters smoke cigarettes frequently and drink socially, and there's a scene of pot smoking. The movie's story is familiar and pulpy, but the presentation is somber and realistic. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
It could have been a slick romantic comedy, or perhaps an action-packed crime film with lots of playful flirting, but instead this drama, steeped in somber realism, is lifeless and forgettable. The Wedding Guest comes from veteran director Michael Winterbottom, who tends to specialize in serious, realistic movies (with the occasional dry comedy or literary adaptation thrown in), and whose ambition sometimes transcends and eclipses his material. In this case, he's taken a pretty simple, almost old-fashioned crime story, and pulled back from it, telling it as if it were happening in the real world, in modern times. It just feels mismatched.
Winterbottom follows the kidnapper character as he takes care of the various details of his assignment:-buying duct tape, renting two cars to throw the law off the trail, etc. A genre film would have shown how these errands snapped into place and added up to something. The Wedding Guest simply stumbles over them, as if they never mattered. Even worse, the main relationship should have had some kind of spark, but it feels mechanical and plot-driven, especially given Patel's constantly grim-faced performance. In other words, the movie could have been fun, but it isn't; could have been romantic or exciting, but it isn't. Sometimes realism isn't all it's cracked up to be.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.