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Ken Kwapis
Robin Williams, Mandy Moore, John Krasinski
Writing Credits:
Kim Barker, Tim Rasmussen, Vince Di Meglio

A reverend puts an engaged couple through a grueling marriage preparation course to see if they are meant to be married in his church.

Box Office:
$35 million.
Opening Weekend:
$10,422,258 on 2604 screens.
Domestic Gross:

Rated PG-13

Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
English PCM 5.1
English Dolby 5.1
French Dolby 5.1
Spanish Dolby 5.1
Supplements Subtitles:

Runtime: 91 min.
Price: $14.98
Release Date: 10/30/2007

• Additional Scenes With Optional Director’s Commentary
• “Ask Choir Boy” Interactive Feature
• Previews


-LG OLED65C6P 65-Inch 4K Ultra HD Smart OLED TV
-Marantz SR7010 9.2 Channel Full 4K Ultra HD AV Surround Receiver
-Panasonic DMP-BD60K Blu-Ray Player
-Chane A2.4 Speakers
-SVS SB12-NSD 12" 400-watt Sealed Box Subwoofer


License To Wed [Blu-Ray] (2007)

Reviewed by Colin Jacobson (April 29, 2021)

Perhaps I’m a glutton for punishment, but occasionally I come across a movie that looks so thoroughly atrocious I can’t help but give it a look. 2007’s License to Wed fell into that category.

In Wed, we meet Sadie Jones (Mandy Moore) and Ben Murphy (John Krasinksi), a young soon-to-be married couple. She wants to follow family tradition and get wed at St. Augustine’s church, a decision that comes with a specific condition.

That facility’s Reverend Frank (Robin Williams) requires couples to go through a “marriage preparation course” before they can tie the knot. Circumstances require that the wedding take place in only three weeks, so Sadie and Ben must pack a three-month course into much less time. The film follows their ups and downs as they navigate Frank’s pushy ways and other obstacles on the path to matrimony.

40 years ago, I thought Robin Williams was a hoot, but now I can’t quite figure out why I ever felt that way. If his patented stream of consciousness comedic style used to work, it sure doesn’t now, as his shtick lost most of its ability to entertain decades ago, and he eventually became more like a parody of himself.

Actually, I shouldn’t blame Williams for the failure of Wed. Sure, he makes an inherently unlikable character even more loathsome, but the problems that befall Wed result mostly from the script and the director.

This isn’t so much a movie as it is a collection of loosely connected comedy skits. The film bounces from one recycled sitcom beat to another without the slightest sense of logic or coherence. Wed clearly cares more about its comedic conceits than it does little nuances like characters, plot or – gasp! – relevance to reality. You’re at a party, you’ve just had an emotional moment – and you leap into a subject that’s absolutely irrelevant at the current time? In real life, no, but in the gag-obsessed world of Wed, yes.

The writers wanted a way to introduce Frank and his course, so they took a cheap and idiotic method to do that. It’s also ridiculous that the “plot” forces the couple to either get married in three weeks or wait two years. If that’s not cheap sitcom thinking, I don’t know what is.

From there until the movie’s conclusion, the gags prompt the story instead of the opposite, as not a single one of them ever makes the slightest bit of sense. Do we really think Frank would conduct such a risqué Sunday school class about the Ten Commandments?

Does it seem logical that right after he preaches those Commandments, he steals? Does… oh, I give up. If I detail every absurd twist in this film, I’ll never finish this review.

Perhaps none of this would matter so much if the movie actually entertained. Alas, no amusement will ever result from this effort.

The closest thing to a laugh occurs when we learn of a mistaken inscription on Sadie’s wedding ring, but even that moderately funny bit flops because the filmmakers beat it to death. Rather than take the chuckle and move along, they pound the gag into us with umpteen repetitions.

I get the feeling the filmmakers feel no confidence in their abilities, so they wear out the jokes because they worry we won’t get them otherwise. This also means that many verbal gags come with slapstick stingers.

The spoken bit didn’t work? No worries – here comes some physical comedy to seal the deal! It all seems exceedingly desperate, as the movie almost grovels in the ways it stoops to amuse the audience.

All of which leaves Wed as a genuinely atrocious film. It lacks the slightest sense of reality, as it stretches, snaps and stomps on credulity in its pursuit of laughs – laughs that it never obtains.

This film provokes disdain, animosity and outright anger at times, but amusement? That never happens.

The Disc Grades: Picture C+/ Audio B-/ Bonus D+

License to Wed appears in both an aspect ratio of approximately 2.35:1 on this Blu-ray Disc. This was a watchable but dated presentation.

One mild concern stemmed from sharpness. Much of the movie came across as reasonably distinct and accurate, but softness impacted wider shots and some interiors. These weren’t a big distraction, but the image could feel more tentative than I’d expect.

No problems related to jagged edges or moiré effects occurred, but I noticed mild indications of edge enhancement. Source flaws remained absent, though artifacts gave the image a murky look at times.

Colors went with a fairly natural palette, but the disc made them a bit overbearing. The hues tended to feel heavier than they should, though they usually offered decent clarity.

Blacks came across as a little too dense, and shadows could seem somewhat dark. This wasn’t a bad presentation, but it seemed mediocre at best.

The PCM 5.1 soundtrack of Wed lacked sonic ambition. I don’t expect this sort of romantic comedy to give me something to show off my system, though, and this track lived up – or down – to expectations.

Music showed nice stereo imaging, but there wasn’t much to the rest of the mix. Various effects added a bit of breadth to the settings, and some decent environmental material developed.

That was about it, though, as the mix failed to open things up to a significant degree. The surrounds remained quite passive through the film.

Although the scope of the track appeared bland, the quality of the audio was fine. Speech came across as concise and well defined. I discerned no concerns related to edginess or intelligibility.

Music showed good range and dynamics, as the score was bright and distinct throughout the movie. Despite their small role in the presentation, effects also seemed clean and accurate.

The mix featured acceptable bass response and clarity overall. It simply failed to ever present an engaging soundfield, so it earned only a lackluster “B-“.

How did the Blu-ray compare to the DVD version? The lossless audio showed the same limited soundfield as the DVD’s track, but quality seemed a little stronger.

As for visuals, the Blu-ray felt better defined and more vivid. Though the BD seemed bland, it still topped the DVD.

The BD repeats the DVD’s extras, and we get a collection of five Additional Scenes. This set runs a total of 12 minutes, 15 seconds.

These include a genuinely terrible alternate opening - complete with Terry Gilliam-style animation – plus a game of one-on-one between Frank and Ben that acts as an alternate for the “catch” scene. We also see how much Carlisle outranks Ben, Ben’s bachelor party and Sadie’s shindig, and a finale with Frank and the Choir Boy.

These are just as bad as the clips in the final cut – maybe even worse. They’re completely terrible.

We can view these scenes with or without commentary from director Ken Kwapis. He gives us notes about the sequences and usually lets us know why he cut them, though a couple of clips don’t include that explanation. Kwapis proves pretty informative, though, enough so to make me think a full commentary for the film would’ve been interesting.

Ask Choir Boy allows you to “choose which relationship/marital questions he answers”. This lets us view 12 different video clips in which “Choir Boy” replies to phone calls on an advice radio show. It’s just as lame as the “comedy” in the movie itself.

Since I went into License to Wed with rock-bottom expectations, the possibility existed I might not loathe it so much. Nope - Wed does many, many things wrong and almost nothing right. The Blu-ray offers mediocre picture and audio along with a minor set of extras. Avoid this atrocious film.

To rate this film, visit the DVD review of LICENSE TO WED

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