Similarly, I take issue with Suzie and Alex's wedding, conducted in one of the most ostentatious locations there is: in front of the lake at The Palace of Fine Arts. I was surprised to see you can rent it as a venue; however, according to the pricing guide I've linked to above, weddings are held in the rotunda and not on the lake. Plus, they can't close it to the public at that time, so you'll have rando tourists walking past your beautiful day.
One scene I did enjoy was Tom's job search upon first landing in Michigan. It's basically a montage of different restaurateurs laughing in his face when they learn he gave up a head chef position in San Francisco to move to Ann Arbor. Now, I've never been to Ann Arbor, or anywhere in Michigan for that matter, and I'm sure it's wonderful. However, San Francisco does have a well-deserved reputation as a foodie town, so I imagine any midwestern college town might find that hard to beat. One thing that's certainly implied by this scene if not outright addressed by the movie is the difficulty one can face once one gives up a 'foothold' in San Francisco. With rents ballooning out of control, leaving a rent-controlled home with the plan of coming back in just two years is essentially gambling on never being able to return at all. Luckily for Tom, he's able to work his connections upon returning to San Francisco to get a well-paying job, but not everyone can be that fortunate.
As can be expected with most San Francisco-set films, geography and physics fly right out the window the second the characters enter a motor vehicle. I'll explain more below.
Authenticity: 4/10- Like Children's Fairyland, a constructed make-believe inside the real city.
Champagne: 6/10 flutes- an okay enough movie, but you might find it going by a bit faster if you've got some of the bubbly in you.
Overall: 4/10- I watched the Five-Year Engagement on the same evening I watched Wadjda, the story of a Saudi girl who wants nothing more than her own bicycle. I found the film about a 10 year-old girl with married peers growing up in a country that still executes women for witchcraft to be more uplifting. Make of that what you will.