What Makes a Wedding Truly Great?

Have you ever been to a great wedding?

Sure you have.

But, stop and think: what made it great?

Was it because you knew the couple well? (Was it because you were getting married? Be honest!)

Was it the food and drink, the dancing, the speeches, the smiles and handshakes and hugs and human connection?

Chances are, it wasn’t any one of those things. It was all those factors working together to create a big emotional response from you and the other guests. There’s no denying that events such as weddings have a feeling of ‘weight’ to them. There’s something in the air.

But why?

What about this:

Two people vowing to spend the rest of their lives together, and sharing that gigantic decision, with those closest to them. The rest of their lives. There is a stark reminder of our own mortality—that someday we will all die—but also a reminder of how much potential and love there is to be found in life too. Marriage symbolizes an acceptance of mortality but it also symbolizes a pledge to make the best of the time we have left.

The past, the present, and the future are harmonized at a wedding.

Think about it. Imagine how much you could learn about a couple by attending their wedding.

You often get to hear from the bride and groom’s parents, siblings, and lifelong friends. You meet their family; you see where they came from. You hear stories of their childhood, their coming-of-age moments and, of course, the moment they met their soulmate and began the next phase of their life.

And then there is the heat of the moment. The presence of the present, if you will.

Emotions run high, faces turn red, smiles come easily. We hug, we shake hands, and slap one another’s backs. Then we watch silently as, in that beautiful moment, these two living, breathing, humans solemnly swear to commit their lives to one another. Forget what happened in the past. No matter what’s coming in the future. In that present moment, they are sure, they are better off with one another.

The vows themselves project us all into the future with the couple. They reinforce that “life will go on until it doesn’t” (to steal from Sydney Pollack’s character in Eyes Wide Shut) and they remind us that even if we don’t know what’s coming, we know that those two—and maybe us, too—will be working every day to stay true and faithful and committed.

 As someone with a background in film studies, video production and live event videography, the following assertion may be a little bit… biased but here it goes:

A movie is the only way to capture and display someone’s life with the same power as attending a milestone event such as a wedding.

When I say “movie,” I mean the sort of video slideshow you so often see at weddings.

In a short survey of 10 married couples, it was found that at least 50% of weddings they attended had some form of video slideshow commemorating the bride and groom, with the majority of couples stating that somewhere between 75 to 100% of the weddings they attended featured a video slideshow.

Of those 10 couples, nine had a video slideshow play at their reception.

While this is a small sample size it makes the point that: if you’re getting married, you need to have a video slideshow—a stream of images set to music—to tell your story as individuals and as a couple.

The dramatic power of condensing someone’s life (or two people’s lives) into 10 minutes cannot be denied. It often moves people to tears and evokes laughter too. You watch someone you know grow up again before your very eyes. You remember moments from your own life when “she was little.”

The past comes forward into the present and time, in a sense, becomes irrelevant. Physically, we are seated in the room, surrounded by others, but in some other way, we are speeding through the years that led up to this moment.

Just as the speeches and the presence of the key players from the couple’s lives connect us to the past, and the atmosphere and the ceremony ground us in the present, and the vows and signing of the marriage license project us into the future, that short film of the couple’s life unites all those points in time into one brief instance.

On that night, our perception of time is changed. We let our emotions rule us for a few hours. And these rare, important moments remind us just how lucky we are to experience anything like this at all.

So when you sit back and think about any of the great weddings you’ve been to—think about how the past, the present and the future were all there in the room with you, dancing.

If you, or someone you know, is getting married please consider Your Call Productions for a personalized video slideshow that is sure to wow guests and be a valuable keepsake. These slideshows make a great gift and take the stress and hassle off the couple or wedding party.

We would love to help you and your loved ones Tell Your Story.