Reviewed by

Christopher Armstead

I might have mentioned this before but if a movie has Black people in it, my wife will watch it. No matter how bad this movie could potentially be, she will watch it and watch it to completion. There are two drawbacks to this for me. One is that they don’t make nearly enough Black movies so she’s usually stuck watching the same Black movies over and over again. Thus if I see ‘Love and Basketball’ one more time I will personally fly to Los Angeles and slap Omar Epps silly. The second drawback is that every once in a while I will get a flood of Black movie screeners and while I might be sick of watching ‘Love and Basketball’, at least it was a good movie. I didn’t get that luxury with the slate of a half dozen or so African American themed movies that recently came my way. It’s not like the little lady likes all of these movies, but she must watch them, thus I must watch them, just like I watched ‘Kiss the Bride’. To the benefit of ‘Kiss the Bride’ it wasn’t pure torture to sit through, but if the best I can say about a movie was that it didn’t cause me physical pain, then the chances are this movie wasn’t very good.

Today is the glorious wedding day of Thomas (Darrin Dewitt-Henson) and Robin (Regan Preston Gomez). These two kids are attractive, they love each other and it is all good. Robin says ‘I Do’. Thomas, on the other hand, does not. Why isn’t Thomas saying ‘I Do’ to this dime piece in front of him that he’s claimed undying love to? Well we need to flashback to get to all of that.

Actually we’re flashbacking primarily to witness the wacky and crazy shenanigans that are going on behind the scenes while we are prepping for this wedding. For instance Thomas’ mom and Robin’s mom hate each other. Robin’s mom also thinks that Robin, a high priced lawyer, could’ve done much better than the working class Thomas. Robin’s baby sister is quite mischievous with all of her smoking in the bathrooms with her fellow underage friends and running off with her big sisters car. Thomas’ baby brother is a big time pro-football player who craves the spotlight and surrounds himself with ‘shorties’. Robin’s father is missing because he went to pick up one of his old friends who knows a ‘shortcut’ to get to the church. Why he would need a shortcut, considering he just came from there, is a mystery but he’s lost now. Just the tip of the iceberg of the wackiness going on behind the scenes.

But then there’s Thomas just moping around with a constant mad-on plastered on his face. Apparently Thomas needs to tell his future bride a deep burning secret so they can start their life together all honest and stuff. Thomas really just needs to keep his mouth shut because where I come from there are ‘lies’ and then there are ‘omissions’. They are not the same. Apparently this secret involves Robin’s maid of honor (Persia White). The Maid of Honor also thinks Thomas needs to keep his mouth shut. Thomas confides in his number one boy and best man Charlie (Delano Mitchell) who thinks he needs to keep his mouth shut, but Thomas wants to tell the truth, or rather volunteer some unnecessary information. Yeah he could’ve told this truth at any time before this wedding or during one the flashbacks that was taking place within our flashback, but he wants to do it now, right before he’s supposed to say ‘I Do’. Seriously Thomas? Seriously. Can love still grow and prosper in this new climate of honesty? Probably but the brother really needs to just keep his mouth shut.

So about ninety five percent of ‘Kiss the Bride’ takes place in the singular location of this church we are stuck at watching all kinds of superfluous madness, watching Darrin Dewitt Henson look depressed, observing Persia White look guilty and watching Regan Preston Gomez enjoy some Popeye’s chicken. That’s pretty much what this entire movie consists of. Thus it is fairly critical, if one is to get entertainment value out of ‘Kiss the Bride’, to find the superfluous madness of the other characters in this movie amusing. Personally I didn’t. Speaking only for me. Now watching Darrin Dewitt Henson look all depressed and angry was more entertaining to me if only because I could never fully get with the reasons he was all depressed. Not that one should go around lying to one’s woman, and we’ve already established that nobody’s really lying about anything over here, but if it’s the day of the wedding and you’re the only person on the planet that feels the need to ruin this day… well that’s just selfish. It’s not his day anyway, it’s her day. Plus the circumstances surrounding the so-called seismic event are minor at best.

To the benefit of director Ibrahim Yilla he seemed to be able squeeze the most out of what I imagine are the limited resources he was working with and looking at the man’s filmography, he’s been an A.D. on a lot of movies that were far worse than this so he can rest easy that his foray into running things turned out better than the ones he simply assisted in. Still, considering I didn’t find the wacky behind the scenes shenanigans all that amusing, coupled with the fact that core of this little romantic comedy was suspsect… I think it’s a romantic comedy…  I didn’t get a lot of entertainment value of out of ‘Kiss the Bride’. Just keep your mouth shut.

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