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Saying ‘I Do’ to the Top Wedding flicks of all time

Paul Peterson

In my other life, where I’m thin and well-groomed, I can also perform weddings. Recently  I had occasion to be at this amazing place called Spindletree Gardens in Tamworth and the day and the bride were lovely and of course I’m always looking for a new Top 10 list and it struck me that the Top 10 Wedding Movies might just be what would save me from reviewing yet another animated feature that no one cares about so here we go.

As always, the most important part of a Top 10 list is establishing the criteria. I recognize I might have a different agenda for a good wedding film that, say, someone who watches Say Yes To The Dress or With This Bread I thee Wed… OK that last one might just be a made up show but at some point the food network is going to take over Lifetime and we’ll have some really bad hybrids. But I digress.
For this Top 10, the film has to have marriage as a primary theme and someone has to show up in a wedding dress.
It has to be a real wedding and there needs to be at least one scene with a bride and groom.
Finally it has to be something I’d actually watch.  It’s great to admire a movie but if it comes on TV would I watch it or skip over it in favor of yet another Gordon Ramsay makeover show, Coming this fall: Bus Shelter Hell.
I ruled out films that have bride or groom in the title so while Princess Bride is a lovely film, it doesn’t meet the first 2 items of the criteria. I also felt Bride of Frankenstein fell a little short on ceremony so it’s out.
My list follows. If you want to send me your list or feel the need to illuminate this dullard to the one great wedding movie I left off the list  send your emails to paul@thechequesinthemail.com That really is my email address. If I was going to make fun of you I would have suggested you send those emails to www.getyourowncolumn.com
Ok, so all that really matters is what’s number 1 and the rest I’ll just sort of rank.
1 The Wedding Crashers – I know I know this doesn’t have the flowery romance of some and it does have a bit of a negative almost anti-married theme but it’s hilarious, features Vince Vaughn at his absolute best, and a redeeming pay off at the end and I watch it every time it’s on. There are so many brilliant moments in this film and it’s fun to see Bradley Cooper get punched in the head full on. Even Owen Wilson shines and so it’s my favorite.
2 Four Weddings and A Funeral – The only thing wrong with this movie is Andie McDowell who isn’t my favorite actress although she has been in several really good movies, but the rest of the ensemble cast is brilliant and I’ve already disclosed my man-crush on Hugh Grant. This is the grandfather of Love Actually and Notting Hill and establishes a really funny and sweet tradition and of course it’s all about love even without the payoff wedding.
3 My Big Fat Greek Wedding – Nia Vardolas couldn’t follow this up with anything that was watchable except at gun point but this little film captured our hearts and grossed a gazillion dollars when it came out in 2002. I still remember the montage of bad dates her parents arranged for her and it makes me laugh. Michael Constantine as her WD-40 spraying dad and a slightly beleaguered John Corbett as the groom rounded out a small film that delivered big laughs and a slice of life that everyone could relate to.
4 The Hangover –  OK this just sneaks on the criteria radar but it does end with a wedding and there is a serious effort to  get there so it’s in. Has to be. I think this is one of the funnier films in recent history and hey, the dude loves her, so what’s not to like? Of course if The Hangover is in then…
5 Bridesmaids –  In all fairness I think this movie clearly plays better to women but there are some brilliantly funny bits in this film and you can’t argue with the box office numbers. On some level it does examine the angst associated with getting married from the woman’s point of view and there are two brilliant performances by Kristen Wig and Melissa McCarthy A little too long but still worth the watch and fair is fair.
6 My Best Friends Wedding –  I know this should have shown up higher according to some of the ladies I polled but the best part of this film is the sing along sequences. This did more for drunken post reception karaoke than it did for marriage but Julia Roberts is fun as the conniving best friend who wants the groom  and a pre-Arod Cameron Diaz is quirky and fun as the naive bride to be. Girl couldn’t sing her way out of bad local theater production but that’s not the point. It’s funny romantic and not a bad watch every 5 0r 6 years.
7 The Wedding Singer – This isn’t really my pick but it has this odd resonance. Adam Sandler and Drew Barrymore really do have chemistry even if it’s in a typical loose shell of a movie Sandler pic. Bad blue suits and cheesy ballads dot the landscape of this 1998 homage to marrying the wrong people, a recurring theme with almost all of our films. Of all of Sandler’s films this is one of the most tolerable and too many people picked it as their favorite for me to ignore it
8 Father of the Bride – Steve Martin pulls off the flustered pushed to the edge dad so well and there is the rather brilliant performance by Martin Short as Frank Engellhoffer the wedding planner about to implode. Diane Keaton is the mom  and in a little twist of music trivia the daughter Kimberly Williams went on to marry Brad Paisley and appear in a couple of his videos. It’s cute and fun and worth the watch.
9 16 Candles – I know the wedding is just the backdrop for this film’s teen angst but there is a wedding, the inlaws do infest the house and Molly Ringwald does get her birthday forgotten by the nuptials so I think it counts. The film is typical John Hughes and even after all these years, it’s very very funny.
10 Rounding out my list  emphasis on MY LIST is Sweet Home Alabama. There are so many little moments in this film that are nice and the laughs are real. I like Reese Witherspoon. She owns the screen when she’s on camera and there is genuine chemistry between her and Josh Lucas and of course it never hurts to see Dr Dreamy get jilted.
So that’s my list. I know it’s a stretch but believe me its better than trying to fill a column with Paranorman cliches
As always, other opinions are welcome, but wrong. That’s it for this week. The cheque’s in the mail and I’m outta here. Paul.

Filed Under: News from Everywhere ElsePaul Peterson

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