As far as wedding crashers go, Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson have nothing on Anne Hathaway. The drug addict sister, Kym, she plays in "Rachel Getting Married" is a time bomb set to explode, that devastates her sister's marriage ceremony.
Director Jonathan Demme is sneaky. He films the events in a hand-held wedding video way, making the audience often feel as if it's eavesdropping on moments of great intimacy. When Kym is driven from a rehab center to the home of her father, Paul (Bill Irwin), for the wedding, she seems chain-smoking nervous, but somewhat in control. We see the hurt love between her and sister Rachel (Rosemarie DeWitt), along with strained tension in the father's fear of letting her drive his car and in a fight over Kym's claim for the coveted maid of honor distinction.
The wedding is ultra-hip and multicultural as white American Rachel is marrying the black Jamaican Sidney (Tunde Adebimpe). Relatives from both families work hard to make things work and gloss over the embarrassments caused by Kym.
Despite the confusion of preparing the home wedding, the sick sister struggles to keep the attention focused on her and her persistent pain which, we discover, stems from a deep, dark family secret.
At first low-key and almost unrecognizable Debra Winger portrays Rachel and Kym's mother, Abby, to perfection, with the central conflict literally landing in her face. "Rachel Getting Married" is the flip side of comedies like "Father of the Bride," "Wedding Crashers," "Four Weddings and a Funeral." Anyone who expects lightweightentertainment will be in for a shock. Those anticipating Oscars should not be surprised.