Thursday, September 7, 2023

'My Big Fat'' attempt at third sequel


   Pretty scenery. Plenty of nicely styled pictures of food, and --- well ... I think I'm out of reasons why we have a My Big Fat Greek Wedding 3
   Void of anything resembling tension, this third edition sends the Portokalos family to Greece to visit the village of the late Mr. Portokalos. Seems Papa P. kept a diary about his immigrant American experiences. He wanted one of his childhood friends in Greece to have it.
   What's billed as a reunion is organized by Nikki (Gia Carides), a local who lives in Dad’s old village, a spot abandoned by most of its former population.
  Aunt Frieda (Maria Vacratsis) remains, probably so that the town has a grumpy/lovable crone. Every village needs one, particularly in movies that feast on cliches.
   So, what do we learn? Paris  (Elena Kampouris), daughter of Toula (Nia Vardolos) and Ian (John Corbett) has just completed her first year of college. 
   There might be a relative (Joe Fantone) no one knew about, and the primping but likable Nick Portokolos (Louis Mandylor) returns to do more primping. 
   Andrea Martin reprises her role as the acerbic Thea Voula, a genial sourpuss of a character. 
   Varololos wrote and directed this comically bland sequel and ethnic  celebration with a heavy foot on the stereotypical pedal.
    Vardalos adds a few new wrinkles, referencing Syrian refugees who've landed in Greece, for example. But it's difficult not to see Part 3 as more of the same --  absent Papa Portokalos who was played by Michael Constantine. Constantine, who appeared in the 2002 original and in 2016's sequel, died in 2021.
   Colorful in the way of picture postcards, this third helping isn’t likely to ruffle many features; it feels like one big fat selfie of a movie.

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