RSVPing for Wedding Season

Wedding Season. (L to R) Suraj Sharma as Ravi, Pallavi Sharda as Asha in Wedding Season. Cr. Ken Woroner/Netflix © 2022.

Growing up my movie screen was always filled with the same familiar-looking faces. I barely saw someone of my shade on the screen and when I usually did they were portrayed in a way that was offensive or stereotypical. Lately, we are seeing more mainstream movies with diverse casts or stories told from different cultures and this makes the film viewing experience more magical.

Wedding Season tells us a story that we have seen a few times but this time we are given a different perspective of this story. A single girl, who is being pressured to get married, meets a young man and they devise a scheme to pretend to be a couple. This leads to true feelings coming to the surface and the aftermath once their ruse is revealed. So what is the difference in this movie? We see it from the perspective of a South Asian woman and get an inside look at how families see their single children and will do anything to match them up for marriage, even if that means creating fake profiles for them on dating sites.

Our two main characters, Asha and Ravi, are matched up by their parents in hopes of them becoming an item. Asha is busy with her job and preparing for a big presentation that she does not want to date anyone but is feeling pressure from her close and extended family. When they run into each other at one of the 13 weddings they are invited to, Asha makes Ravi a preposition to pretend they are a couple to stop the constant matchmaking from their families. Ravi agrees and as the story progresses we see that this fake relationship is slowly turning into something real.

Without giving too much away from the story there are some twists thrown at us as we learn more about who Ravi is. We are also introduced to Asha’s future brother-in-law, Nick, who is trying all he can to learn about the culture he is marrying into. This portrayal may seem silly at first but it is a good reminder that we all should learn from other cultures to become well-rounded people. At times it feels like Nick is the comic relief of the movie, but he is that outsider, like us, that is looking in and trying to find their place in this world.

I will say that all of the wedding scenes are visually stunning. The clothing, the music, and the dancing seem to be meticulously put together to give this movie a fantastic look. Paliavi Sharda, who plays Asha, is a trained dancer and choreographed the final dance scene in the movie. She stated “being given agency by our director, Tom Dey to contribute my knowledge and creativity in this way was so special and made me feel incredibly seen.”

Being seen is what Wedding Season does to South Asian culture. In watching the interactions between the nosey and pushy aunties, we are reminded of our own family members that are always butting into our personal business. We see how children do whatever they can to please their parents and still come up short sometimes. This is a universal message that we can all relate to and I’m glad we are seeing it from a different culture.

Wedding Season. (L to R) Suraj Sharma as Ravi, Ari Afsar as Priya, Pallavi Sharda as Asha in Wedding Season. Cr. Ken Woroner/Netflix © 2022.

Final Thoughts: Wedding Season feels like a romantic comedy that we have seen before but we view it through a culture that we normally don’t see portrayed on the screen. This fresh take on this trope makes this a charming movie that will entertain everyone. Wedding Season also shows us that all of our stories are universal no matter the culture that is portrayed on the screen

Kid-Friendly: The movie is very kid-friendly and will show children the importance of being true to themselves and family.

Violence: There is no physical violence in the movie.

After breaking off her engagement, leaving a successful banking career behind in the city, and moving to New Jersey for a fresh start, Asha (Pallavi Sharda) couldn’t feel more alive. Her mother, on the other hand, thinks that her oldest daughter is about to miss a lifetime of happiness if she doesn’t take her focus away from her new startup job and place it on finding a husband instead. Taking matters into her own hands, Asha’s mother creates an online dating profile in order to set Asha up with a “perfect” match. Enter Ravi (Suraj Sharma) — or rather Ravi’s parents — who have the exact same idea for their son. Asha and Ravi’s reluctant first date is a bust, and they quickly discover that each is in a seemingly different place in their life right now. After realizing her mother is relentless and will not give up, Asha proposes a plan to Ravi that would be a win-win for both: a pretend relationship to be each other’s date to get through the upcoming wedding season. Through countless invitations, dances and dresses in the next three months, Asha and Ravi slowly come to find that they might have more in common than they think. Maybe their parents were onto something after all.

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