Weddings are always a good subject for films, but some wedding movies are better than others. Which are the best?
The Early Show turned to Dalton Ross of Entertainment Weekly magazine for a list of his favorites, in Tuesday's "Home Theater" segment.
Ross' top five:
Four Weddings And A Funeral (1994)
IMDB.com says, "The film follows the fortunes of Charles and his friends as they wonder if they will every find true love and marry. Charles thinks he's found 'Miss Right' in Carrie, an American. This British subtle comedy revolves around Charlie, his friends and the four weddings and one funeral which they attend."
Ross' take? "Four Weddings and a Funeral" is basically every wedding nightmare rolled into one. You've got people being late, inappropriate toasts, a bumbling priest, even awkward seating problems. There's one scene where Hugh Grant is at the alter with the wrong woman.
Muriel's Wedding (1994)
According to IMDB.com, "Muriel finds life in Porpoise Spit, Australia, dull and spends her days alone in her room listening to Abba music and dreaming of her wedding day. Slight problem: Muriel has never had a date. Then she steals some money to go on a tropical vacation, meets a wacky friend, changes her name to Mariel, and turns her world upside down."
And Ross says the thing that makes this film so great is that Muriel is basically the ultimate underdog. Ignored by men, ridiculed by friends, she's the most unlikely person to get hitched, but she's always dreaming of a big, glorious wedding. You can't help but root for her. She just makes some curious decisions, and everything doesn't work out exactly right: It's a sham marriage, a green-card wedding. And there's a lot of Abba in it, which goes a long way.
The In-Laws (1979)
IMDB.com: "In preparation for his daughter's wedding, dentist Sheldon Kornpett meets Vince Ricardo, the groom's father. Vince, a manic fellow who claims to be a government agent, then proceeds to drag Sheldon into a series of chases and misadventures from New York to Central America.
Ross explains he likes this one as much as he does because there's always that tense moment when meeting your in-laws for first time, and it's much better when you see others do it. Basically, this movie's a lot of fun. It's really a buddy picture: You hardly see the bride and groom. It's kind of like "Midnight Run." And Peter Falk is hilarious in it. He's just great.
IMDB.com: "Simon and Wei-Tung are a gay couple living together in Manhattan. To defer the suspicions of Wei-Tung's parents, Simon suggests a marriage of convenience between Wei-Tung and Wei-Wei, an immigrant in need of a green card. When Wei-Tung's parents come to America for the wedding, they insist upon an elaborate banquet, resulting in several complications."
Ross: We've all heard of meddling mothers. This is the story of a Taiwanese-American made to feel so guilty by his mother about not being married, that he ties the knot. But, he's gay, so it doesn't work. You've got some serious culture clashes on display. About half of it is subtitled. It's funny, but it's sort of like "Muriel's Wedding," because there are some serious moments to it, as well. They think it's going to be really easy to pull the marriage off, but they end up having to take the charade pretty far.
IMDB.com: "Philadelphia heiress Tracy Lord throws out her playboy husband C.K. Dexter Haven shortly after their marriage. Two years later, Tracy is about to marry respectable George Kittredge whilst Dexter has been working for "Spy" magazine. Dexter arrives at the Lord's mansion the day before the wedding with writer Mike Connor and photographer Liz Imbrie, determined to spoil things."
Ross says the whole thing here is you have three silver screen legends: Cary Grant, Jimmy Stewart, and Katharine Hepburn, all at top of their game. Hepburn actually acquired the rights to the play, to make it into a movie. At the time, she was actually considered box-office poison by Hollywood after a series of failures, but she only relinquished the film rights after she got to play the lead. Being in there with Grant and Stewart got her going again. Stewart won the Best Actor Oscar; many thought Grant should have gotten it. And it comes with a great two-disc DVD set, with a documentary, radio adaptations, and commentary track.
Which films didn't make Ross' cut?
Among them, "My Big Fat Greek Wedding," "The Wedding Singer," "Meet the
Fokkers" and "Father of the Bride."
"Call me crazy," added Ross, "but I love the wedding at the very beginning of "The Godfather." They're having a great time, everyone is still alive. I like that one a lot."