An absent father finds himself working the wedding of the daughter he never got to know.
|Director(s)||Melody C. Roscher|
|Screenplay By||Melody C. Roscher|
|Date Released (Sundance Film Festival)||1/28/2021|
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It’s Bella’s wedding day, and everything is perfect. Her family and the groom’s family are there, and while there has been the occasional ignorant comment, nothing seems to be spoiled. Yet, when Bella’s mother, Clem, realizes Bella’s father is there, she freaks out. However, with him setting eyes on his child, he asks to speak to her. Leaving you to wonder, what can a man absent a person’s entire life can say to make up for lost time?
Things To Note | Question(s) Left Unanswered
- Reason(s) for Film Rating: It’s rather tame. Nothing to raise a red flag about.
- Jump Scares/ Laughs/ Tear-Jerking Moments: The ending may make you tear up
Cast & Characters
Please Note: This is not an exhaustive list of every cast member.
Bella is the bride who, with not knowing her father, is in a literal white wedding, with the only people of color there being hired to do so. Yet, with one of the band members being her father, it seems she may want to change the makeup of those who love her.
Clem is Bella’s mother, who didn’t really have the support Bella is experiencing when it came to her relationships. Which could be why Bower didn’t participate in Clem’s upbringing? Since it isn’t really stated how far Clem’s parents would go.
Bower is a Jazz musician, Clem’s ex, and Bella’s father, unknowingly hired to play at his daughter’s wedding. A young woman he has been aware of but has not spoken to or written once in her life – so she knows.
The Noted Microaggression
In a sea of whiteness, there is Bella, who has melanin, her hair in locks, and clearly that is a shock for her husband’s family. So while only touched upon for a moment, when Bella is speaking to her in-laws, the nod that her being bi-racial, raised around white people, and marrying a white man, doesn’t make her seem any less of an other to them, it was a nice touch. Mainly due, for us, pushing the idea her love for her husband wasn’t based on anything but love. For to put up with comments like that and still smile? Oh, she has to love that man.
Understanding Bella’s Need To Confront Her Father
There is this constant push to handle your baggage from previous chapters of life before starting a new one. From what it appears, Bella has reached a milestone yet still was looking over her shoulder to see if her dad would ever make an effort to catch up. So, forcing his hand by hiring him, we understand and support that. For, in order to move forward, fully appreciate the people who showed up by choice, she had to confront the man who didn’t show up despite all the conveniences available to him.
And while it can be said the confrontation could be seen as her not needing her dad, it could also be said he was freed from expectations from her, and also she let go of the ones she had. Making it so, if he wanted a relationship, while the past wasn’t forgotten, it could be set aside if he made a consistent effort.
On The Fence
Feeling Like There Could Be More To The Father’s Story
Taking note any man being out of his child’s life raises an eyebrow, and the idea he was/is a deadbeat, Bella’s father had a lot going against him. However, and maybe this is because I’m a Black man, I wish he was able to explain why. Granted, the reason could be utter BS, but the lack of explanation damned him and made it so, by default, to assume he was the bad guy.
Yet, with him noting he thought about her, and things were complicated, so pulls the need to know what is he talking about? Especially since he didn’t run from the conversation Bella wanted or needed, he invited it. So clearly, there is far more to this story than meets the eyes and ears.
Rating: Positive (Worth Seeing)
Honestly, the only thing that gives us pause about White Wedding is how it ends, purely due to personal bias. Bower, Bella’s dad, didn’t cower, didn’t run, he owned up to his absence and seemed to have a reason for it. Now, whether it was Clem, work, or something else, and would it suffice? I can’t say, but it is clear White Wedding ends on an ellipsis, and there is more story to tell.
Hence the positive label. White Wedding presents a story that needs to be fleshed out in either a movie or mini-series. Because all Bella went through with her husband and his family, down to wanting to face her father and perhaps hear his story, it’s needed. It could be the catalyst for so many pursuing healing rather than holding onto the hatred caused by someone’s absence for reasons you don’t know. Well, beyond what the parent who stayed might have told you, which sometimes exempts them from their role.
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