ALWAYS A BRIDESMAID (2001)
Featuring Nina Davenport, Samantha Davenport, Edward Hull, James Berman, Nina Andrews, Scott Andrews, Kim King, Cristy Michele, Jenifer Vickery, Sarah Wolaver, Sarah Moskowitz, Sharon Grayzel, Edith Reddy, Romana Vysatova, Eric Ingersoll, Nadette Stasa, David Hershey-Webb, Louise Reggio, Rhonda Fitzgerald, Betsy Reed and Susannah Hunnewell.
Written by Nina Davenport.
Directed by Nina Davenport.
Distributed by Docurama / New Video. Not Rated. 98 minutes.
This consistently interesting documentary takes a hard look at the institution of marriage in a modern society where sexual roles are changing so quickly and yet there are still bedrock values and societal brainwashing that pull hard.
Writer/director (and star, though she rarely appears on camera) Nina Davenport is a wedding videographer. She has just turned thirty and is realizing that she is the only one of her friends who isn’t getting married. She is involved with a man who is a good fit for her in many ways, but he is commitment-phobic. Through her work and personal relations she has become somewhat obsessive about marriage. She becomes more cynical about the idea as she hits a rough patch with her boyfriend and insists she will never marry.
Davenport is torn, through years of social programming she is somewhat desperate to find a storybook love and marriage … yet she is also fascinated and much more deeply impressed by a series of elderly women she meets, “spinsters” who never took the trip down the aisle.
Davenport starts questioning anyone she can, brides, grooms, and wedding guests, trying to come up with an idea of why the wedding looms so large over a woman’s psyche. The interviews are fascinating and Davenport strives for big answers that she only sometimes hits on. Many of the questions have no answers.
In the long run, though, for as much as Davenport insists otherwise, it is obvious she is more interested in the fairytale than the real life. Otherwise, I guess there would be no film. (8/01)
Jay S. Jacobs
Copyright © 2001 PopEntertainment.com. All rights reserved. Posted: August 28, 2001.