Cross cultural encounters between families occur a lot more now than they used to before. Getting married to someone with a different background is not as shocking as it would’ve been 20- 30 years ago. In My Big Fat Greek Wedding, many ideas are developed about cross cultural encounters between families such considering that they can change beliefs, extend opportunities, and show even the older folks that two different people can happily come together. This story is about Toula, a Greek woman, and Ian, a non-Greek professor.
They fall in love but encounter many problems because Toula comes from a very traditional Greek family. When you meet someone who looks at life differently then you, you’re views on life also being to change and this is not necessarily a bad thing. In the movie, Toula’s parents believed that Greek women should marry Greek men and, well, make Greek babies. Toula disagreed and when she got older she finally found the courage to tell her parents that she had found a non-Greek man and he was the one she was in love with. Although they disapproved at first, after getting to know Ian, they approved and arranged the marriage.
The family’s beliefs changed and by the time Toula had a daughter, she told her that she could marry anyone she wanted to. I feel like it’s important for us to reserve our cultures but also to learn about others. By getting to know people with different backgrounds we extend our knowledge and opportunities. In the movie, Toula was expected to work in the family restaurant her whole life. She wanted to do more with life and what it had to offer and when she met Ian it was possible. She was introduced to a whole new way of life, way different than the one she had grown with. She saw a brighter and different future than the rest of her family.
Her career path changed, and she was able to show her father that she was a much more capable person, rather than just being a traditional Greek housewife. As the movie came to a conclusion, everything seemed to work out quite greatly. Toula and Ian seemed very happy living together, and obviously the families of the two were happy for them as well. Their child seemed to stay attached to the Greek culture by being enrolled in Greek school, and Ian was adapting quite well. This is a prime example that goes to show, that people that come from two different worlds can live happily together and all come together as one.
Even though the Millers’ thought that the Portokalos family was quite strange at first, they became exceptionally accepting at the end of the film. At the end of the day, cross-cultural encounters help make you a much more-open minded person in general, you learn about different ways of life, and you see two cultures come together and it is truly just beautiful. Toula learnt not just about Ian, but also many new things about herself, and in the case of Ian, he learnt many things about himself as well. They both saw two different, amazing sides of life, and all thanks to cross-cultural encounters.