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Film review: 'Table 19'



It's a relatively clever concept for a comedy: a group of strangers meet when they're assigned to the "randoms" table at an acquaintance's wedding (reserved for courtesy invites no one actually expected to attend). As the day wears on, the band of misfit guests forge an unlikely bond, enlisting one another's help as they each face down their own personal crises.

Written by indie film gurus Jay and Mark Duplass with director Jeffrey Blitz, "Table 19" has a likeable, infectiously shaggy charm. It also helps considerably that the movie's blessed with a cast saturated with talent. Anna Kendrick is the ex-Maid of Honor, banished from the head table after a bitter breakup with the bride's brother; Lisa Kudrow and Craig Robinson are business associates of the bride's father, facing a marital crisis; June Squibb is the bride's childhood nanny, unsure the girl even remembers her now that's she's grown; comedian Stephen Merchant is a distant relation with a shady past (also the least developed of the characters); and Tony Revolori (so good as the bellboy-in-training, Zero, in "The Grand Budapest Hotel") is the awkward, horny teen whose late father was a friend of the groom's father.

It may be a slight, fizzy confection, but the film's frequently quite sweet and often very funny. And as the tablemates open up, Blitz invests things with just enough genuine emotion and heart to make "Table 19" an event worth RSVPing to.

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