We’ve pretty much all been there. Invited to the wedding of someone you barely know – maybe a distant cousin or a family friend you haven’t seen in years – and stranded at the reception with the other cast-offs, randoms, and even-more-distant cousins. It’s not a fun place to be – especially when you were originally the maid of honor.
This is the premise of Table 19, the Anna Kendrick-led comedy-drama arriving on Digital HD, DVD, and Blu-ray this week – just in time for wedding season. Relieved of her maid of honor duties after being dumped by the best man (and the bride’s brother), Eloise (Kendrick) decides to attend her oldest friend’s wedding anyway. She finds herself seated among random strangers in the back of the ballroom.
This unlikely collection of characters forms a delightful – and surprisingly emotional – ensemble. You’ve got an old woman who was the bride’s first nanny (June Squibb), a married couple who seem a long way off from their happily ever after (Craig Robinson and Lisa Kudrow), a British ex-con (Stephen Merchant), and a horny teenager looking to pick up girls (Tony Revolori). Their first interactions are almost painfully awkward, and the wedding seems like it will be a disappointment for all of them. As secrets are revealed, Eloise and her new tablemates bond and wind up influencing each other’s lives for the better.
Though some of the initial comedy moments of Table 19 make for a shaky start, the movie eases into something much more rewarding. Everything we love about Anna Kendrick – especially the humor and heartache that range from snarky to endearing – is on display here. While Eloise initially seems like a woman lost or looking for some kind of revenge after her breakup, some surprising reveals make her a very real character with an impactful story. This is also true of Eloise’s tablemates, who evolve from stereotypical wedding guests into people you truly feel for. Wyatt Russell (Everybody Wants Some!!, Black Mirror) is also wonderful as Teddy, Eloise’s seemingly awful ex who actually has a lot more going on beneath the surface.
Without delving too far into spoiler territory, what we really loved about Table 19 is how well it does the drama part of comedy-drama. It made us laugh, but it also – sometimes unexpectedly – brought the feels. It isn’t your typical romantic-comedy, and it’s not one of those wedding movies that will make you feel #foreveralone. The story reminds us to take care of each other, cherish the people in our lives, and be open to forming friendships (and even romance) under the most unlikely circumstances.
From Table 19‘s all-too-familiar awkward inside look at the wedding scene to its outstanding ensemble cast and surprising story, this is one shindig we’re glad we attended. It’s perfect for a summer movie night fare, especially if you have a few “Save the Date” cards up on your refrigerator.
Table 19 is available now on Digital HD, Blu-ray, and DVD.