Four Weddings and a Funeral Reviews
Yes it has a huge, wonderful cast and Richard Curtis is a delightful writer, however this movie is just boring and predictable from the start. you really don't have to watch the whole two hours of this movie in order to know where its going and whats its about.
If this is the best of British Comedy then i'd be very worried!
A mediocre movie, an obvious plot but a good cast and funny moments.
"Five good reasons to stay single."
Four Weddings and a Funeral is a pretty good film when it comes to romantic comedies. It, however, didn't really suit my taste. I laughed here and there. I was able to enjoy some clever dialogue. I easily sat through the whole thing. But I can't really say whether I liked it or not. I will say I liked it more than most romantic comedies.
As far as the cast goes, Hugh Grant was decent. Simon Callow was terrific. Rowan Atkinson was there, which is never a good thing. Andie McDowell was bad and Kristin Scott Penn wasn't used as well as she could have been. The movie is obviously split up into five gatherings, four of which being weddings and one is a funeral; surprise, surprise. At each of the social gatherings Charles and Carrie run into each other. In ways the film reminds me of a inferior When Harry Met Sally. They connect the first time they meet, but go their separate ways, just to meet again. Then they go their separate ways again. It's all very predictable, but still not horrible.
What does make this better than the standard romantic comedy is the that the movie does have clever dialogue and did make me laugh here and there. It was relentlessly funny, but it was just enough. The dialogue fits Hugh Grant to perfection. It's just a shame that some of it has to come out of Andie McDowells mouth. I don't hate her nearly as much as some, but her performance really took away from this becoming a great film. Overall it's not as spectacular as I was lead to believe, but it is passable.
Most of the action of the film takes place either at, or immediately before or after, one of the four church services mentioned in the title. The main character, Charles, is a well-to-do young man, probably educated at public school, and clearly a member of the professional classes, although we never actually discover what his job is. The film starts with a wedding at which Charles is best man to Angus, one of his old friends, and at which he meets Carrie, an attractive young American woman. The film then traces the ups and downs of the relationship of Charles and Carrie, via two more weddings (the second of which is Carrie's own, after she and Charles have split up), the funeral of Gareth, another friend of Charles who suffers a heart attack while dancing at Carrie's wedding, and one final marriage ceremony.
Hugh Grant, as Charles, gives a very good performance. Grant has a relatively narrow range as an actor, but he is capable of some excellent work within that range. There are some subtle differences between Charles and William, the character Grant played in "Notting Hill", another romantic comedy written by Curtis. William is a shy young man who uses ironic, self-deprecating humour as a cover for his shyness and lack of self-confidence. He is very much in love with Anna, that film's heroine, but is afraid to declare his love because he cannot believe that a beautiful and successful film star would take any interest in the owner of a small bookshop. Charles, by contrast, is less shy than William and enjoys more success with women. His humour is also ironic, but for a different reason. He is afraid of his emotions and of commitment and uses irony as a means of distancing himself from life and of avoiding having to commit himself.
The film can be seen as the story of Charles's journey to emotional maturity. He has had a number of brief affairs, all of which have petered out precisely because he is afraid of his emotions. His relationship with Carrie initially goes the same way and she marries a richer and older man. The change in Charles's character is partly due to the fact that he sees his carefree bachelor world disappearing as most of his friends get married, but the event which seems to have the greatest effect on him is Gareth's funeral, at which a moving eulogy is read by Matthew, Gareth's gay partner, touchingly played by John Hannah. Charles realises the strength of the love that Gareth and Matthew shared for one another and comes to appreciate that such a relationship is something to be valued.
Grant does well to make Charles a sympathetic figure, despite his having many failings quite apart from his ironic distancing of himself from the world. He is clumsy, accident-prone (he manages to lose the ring at Angus's wedding), much given to profane language and can be appallingly tactless, especially about his former girlfriends. The other main character, Carrie, can perhaps be seen as a female Charles, someone who is on the same journey as him but who has travelled slightly further. (It is significant that her name is short for Caroline, the feminine equivalent of the name Charles). She freely admits to having had over thirty previous lovers, but she is the first to want to bring emotional commitment to their relationship. Am I, incidentally, the only one to have liked Andie MacDowell's performance?- she has come in for a lot of criticism, in my view undeserved, on this board.
The film is, however, more than simply a study of relationships- it is also very funny with some superb lines. Hugh Grant can be very amusing, and there was a great cameo from Rowan Atkinson as a bumbling, nervous trainee priest who keeps fluffing his lines during one of the weddings. ("Awful wedded wife", or "Holy Goat" for "Holy Ghost"). I also liked David Bower as Charles's deaf brother David, the late Charlotte Coleman as his impudent younger sister Scarlett and Anna Chancellor as his ex-girlfriend Henrietta (also known as Duckface), whose embarrassing emotional incontinence perhaps explains why Charles is so keen to distance himself from his feelings. I was less impressed by Simon Callow as Gareth, loud, extrovert and excessively hearty (like most characters Callow plays).
Perhaps a fault of the movie - whereas it does a good job of discussing the process of making that decision of who your life partner will be, I'm not sure how many couples these days go thru those fancy weddings anymore?
Hugh Grant plays a man that along with his friends attend many a wedding hence the title. He is a very single man and his interest is peaked when meeting at one wedding ceremony a single American (MacDowell). Many funny scenes such as when Hugh and his sister are very late to the 1st wedding in the movie. Andie has a cute scene in trying on wedding gowns and there is a lovely sountrack...cheers!