Son of the Bride: An Uplifting Movie That Embraces Us
Twenty years have passed since this movie was made. However, like any masterpiece, it’s improved over time. Furthermore, this Argentinian movie has had such an impact worldwide, theatrical versions have been made. In fact, in Madrid, it filled the theater every day, after a successful tour, and in the United States, they’ve bought the rights to produce a remake.
Son of the Bride provokes conflicting emotions. It’s a combination of the Italian cinema and theater that Argentina inherited thanks to its long history of immigration. It depicts serious events that might ordinarily simply make us cry, yet we’re also able to smile and laugh at them. It was directed by Juan José Campanella who’s extremely committed to this kind of film. He promotes the idea that we can face the worst of life’s situations with a smile.
A story from his own life
Juan José Campanella (Luna de Avellaneda, El Secreto de sus Ojos, Vientos de Agua) includes data from his own autobiography to tell us a story of parents and children facing conflict and a son who grows up convinced of his mother’s contempt. That’s why the most important scene in the film, in which it’s impossible not to cry, is when the mother, suffering from Alzheimer’s disease, tells her son, Rafael, now in his forties that she does love him, and hugs him. He’s freed at last from the idea that he wasn’t the son she wanted.
Rafael has to encounter nightmares on a daily basis. He lives with his girlfriend and is absorbed in his own problems. These include bad debts, an unsuccessful business, and even a heart attack. Furthermore, he’s unable to realize how much the love of his girlfriend could help him.
The ultimate hug
The wonder of this movie is the way in which it deals with the most elementary aspects of everyday life. For instance, living with pain, old age, and illness. The plotline concerns how Rafael’s father wants to remarry his wife in a church because they originally only had a civil ceremony. However, the Church won’t allow it. To start with, Rafael is against the idea of a wedding, as he feels his mother is too ill with Alzheimer’s and will be unable to really participate. Nevertheless, he eventually relents and enlists the help of his actor friend to perform the role of the priest at the second ‘wedding’.
No doubt some of us will sob openly while others might discreetly wipe away a tear at this movie. However, there’s no doubt that the characters demonstrate such a well-portrayed idea of brotherhood, it feels like an enormous hug. It’s a cry amidst the smiles, representing parents who give their unconditional approval so that their children can continue to rebuild themselves on a daily basis.