As if losing both her husband and her money isn't enough, a woman in her mid-20s also finds herself married to a 12-year-old boy (who doesn't even like her) in the comedy Holy Matrimony. Havana (Patricia Arquette) is an aspiring showgirl who is working at a sleazy carnival while she dreams of her big break. Short on cash, Havana's boyfriend Peter (Tate Donovan) comes up with a plan; while Havana flirts with her boss, Peter will swipe his keys and lift the day's take from the carnival's safe. After grabbing the cash, Havana and Peter hightail it to Canada, where Peter figures that they can hole up with his family. However, Peter didn't always lead a life of crime; he was raised in a Hutterite community, and while Peter's Uncle Wilhelm (Armin Mueller-Stahl) and younger brother Ezechiel (Joseph Gordon Levitt) are glad to see him, they don't think much of Havana, whose brassy personality convinces them that she was the one who led Peter down the wrong path. To make peace with his family, Peter marries Havana, but not long after, he dies in a car wreck. Hutterite custom demands that when a man dies, his widow is to marry his brother; the catch in this case is that Ezechiel is only 12 years old and understandably not interested in matrimony. However, Havana agrees to the marriage, largely because Ezechiel knows where Peter stashed the earnings from the robbery and Havana does not. Havana's ignorance of Hutterite traditions and lack of enthusiasm for their austere lifestyle is a matter of no small annoyance to her, but Ezechiel shrewdly uses his knowledge about Peter's hidden bankroll to persuade Havana to lead a more righteous life. Holy Matrimony was directed by Leonard Nimoy in one of his periodic breaks from acting.
by Mark Deming synopsis