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Planning a wedding is no easy task, and finding the perfect moment for the big occasion is nothing short of impossible, but Violet (Emily Blunt) and Tom (Jason Segel) have no idea of the challenges ahead of them when they decide to get married. This slapstick comedy plays like the art of awkward: Violet, Tom, their friends, and families all have huge propensities for saying and doing the absolutely worst, most awkward thing in any given situation. From a bungled marriage proposal to a multimedia presentation about Tom’s ex-girlfriends at the couple’s engagement party, and an inappropriate hookup between Violet’s sister Susie (Alison Brie) and Tom’s good friend Alex (Chris Pratt), the impending nuptials promise nothing but trouble for everyone but viewers in the mood to laugh. Rising chef Tom sacrifices a job he loves in San Francisco, along with the promise of swift promotion, to follow academic Violet to a teaching fellowship in Michigan. The only job Tom can find there is in a sandwich shop, and the move puts their wedding plans on hold. As Violet pursues her dreams of teaching, Tom refuses to admit how unhappy he really is, instead desperately pursuing a friendship with a fellow faculty spouse that lands him with some very odd hobbies and not much fulfillment. Eventually, the strain takes a huge toll on their relationships with one another, their friends, coworkers, and families. But one thing is certain, director Nicholas Stoller makes sure that their journey is just as funny as it is sad.The Five-Year Engagement is an irreverent comedy that takes every opportunity to go well beyond the boundaries of good taste in the quest for laughter, and that really is the main point of the film. That said, Violet and Tom do actually share a few heartfelt moments and discover some very real truths–that no one can anticipate and solve all the problems of an impending marriage before they actually take the plunge, and there is absolutely no “perfect time” to get married. Of course, those moments of truth are arrived at by a winding path of awkward conversations, bawdy humor, ridiculous situations, and childish behavior that will keep viewers laughing out loud for pretty much the entire film. –Tami Horiuchi
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