Our ‘Big Fat Greek’ Review

     Nia Vardalos, who plays Toula, stars in this comedy as a single, Greek American woman in her early thirties who is stuck in a rut.
     Still living at home with her parents and working in their Greek restaurant, Toula is more than ready for a change. Toula’s parents Gus (Michael Constantine) and Maria (Lainie Kazan) feel that change should be getting married to a nice Greek man.      At the start, Toula is exactly how she describes herself “frumpy.” She wears unattractive dresses, tacky glasses and her hairstyle, well, it could use some improvement. One day while working at her parent’s restaurant (called Dancing Zorba’s), Toula notices Ian Miller (John Corbett from “Sex in the City”) who seems perfect. While she didn’t have the courage to talk to him, she decides she is ready for some self-improvement.
     Toula starts taking control of her life by convincing her very reluctant father to let her take computer classes at a community college. Insisting that the classes will help computerize the family business. Toula’s father agrees. She also gets a new job working at her aunt’s travel agency.
     As Toula starts reclaiming herself by taking classes and changing jobs, she also starts paying more attention to her outside appearance. Losing the glasses for contacts and the housedresses for cuter clothes, Toula’s makeover along with her new and improved attitude sets the stage for the rest of this heart-warming story.
     While working at the travel agency Ian notices Toula and soon after they begin to date. The big problem here is that Ian is not Greek and this fact horrifies her family and especially her father Gus. Gus adamantly believes that Greek women should marry Greek men and have Greek babies. And as a result of Toula’s new boyfriend, Gus starts inviting suitable Greek men over to meet Toula for dinner. Toula, now in love with Ian has no interest in any of these men.
     As the story progresses, Ian pops the big question to Toula who is undeniably happier than she’s ever been and she agrees. The wedding date is set and it becomes painfully obvious to Toula’s father that nothing can stop it. The rest of the movie vividly illustrates the uniting of two very different families; Toula’s family that is very Greek, very religious, and very large and Ian’s family that is comprised of Ian and his two parents that Gus describes are like dry toast.
     I loved this movie. I think many people will be able to relate to this movie especially in California as there is so much cross cultural dating and so many different ways of making it work. The DVD version of this movie has extensive commentaries that were interesting but I thought were unnecessary.