Father of the Bride: Part II (1995)

Father of the Bride: Part II (1995)

TOMATOMETER

AUDIENCE SCORE

Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Father of the Bride: Part II Photos

Movie Info

In this sequel, George Banks is going to be a grandpa, and he's not sure he likes the idea. Rather than accepting it gracefully, he immediately falls into a mid-life tailspin. However, when his wife Nina discovers that she too is pregnant, George really has his hands full.
Rating:
PG
Genre:
Comedy
Directed By:
Written By:
In Theaters:
 wide
On DVD:
Runtime:
Studio:
Disney

Cast

Steve Martin
as George Banks
Diane Keaton
as Nina Banks
Martin Short
as Franck Eggelhoffer
Kimberly Williams-Paisley
as Annie Banks MacKenzie
George Newbern
as Bryan MacKenzie
Kieran Culkin
as Matty Banks
B.D. Wong
as Howard Weinstein
Peter Michael Goetz
as John MacKenzie
Eugene Levy
as Habib
Jane Adams (II)
as Dr. Eisenberg
Kate McGregor-Stewart
as Joanna MacKenzie
Rebecca Chambers
as Young Woman at Gym
April Ortiz
as Olivia
Dulcy Rogers
as Ava, the Beautician
Kathy Anthony
as Beautician No. 2
Lori Alan
as Mrs. Habib
Stephanie Miller
as Annie (age 4)
Hallie Meyers-Shyer
as Annie (age 7)
Jay Wolpert
as Dr. Brooks
Ann Walker
as Dr. Brooks' Nurse
Sandra Silvestri
as Jogging Mom
William Akey
as Frantic Father No. 1
Harris Laskaway
as Prostate Doctor
Seth Kaplan
as Wild Four-Year-Old
Jonathan Emerson
as Frantic Father No. 2
Joshua Preston
as Tantrum Toddler
K.C. Colwell
as Father Heading off to Work
Chase Colwell
as Adorable Toddler
Tony Simotes
as Construction Foreman
Annie Meyers-Shyer
as Shower Guest
Linda DeScenna
as Shower Guest
Heidi Averill
as Shower Guest
Chelsea Lynn
as Matty's Friend
Sue Colwell
as Nina's Customer
Rodriego Botero
as Gang Kid
Vince Lozano
as Gang Kid
Caroline Lagerfelt
as Check-In Nurse
Ilene Waterstone
as Check-in Nurse
Wendy Worthington
as Prostate Nurse
Dorian Spencer
as ER Nurse
Harris Laskawy
as Prostate Doctor
Roxanne Beckford
as Nina's Nurse
Valerie Hemmerich
as Nina's Nurse
Peter Spears
as Dr. Wagner
Susan Beaubian
as Annie's Nurse
Mychael Bates
as Hospital Orderly
Jerri Rose White
as Baby Megan
Shannon Kennedy
as Baby Megan
Casey Boersma
as Baby George
Dylan Boersma
as Baby George
Katie Pierce
as Two-Month-Old Megan
Jonathan Selstad
as Two-Month-Old George
Thomas Selstad
as Two-Month-Old George
Show More Cast

Critic Reviews for Father of the Bride: Part II

All Critics (21) | Top Critics (5)

No excerpt available.

Full Review… | March 25, 2009
Variety
Top Critic

No excerpt available.

Full Review… | January 25, 2006
Time Out
Top Critic

No excerpt available.

May 20, 2003
New York Times
Top Critic

No excerpt available.

Full Review… | June 18, 2002
San Francisco Chronicle
Top Critic

No excerpt available.

Full Review… | April 12, 2002
Globe and Mail
Top Critic

No excerpt available.

Full Review… | February 13, 2001
Los Angeles Times
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Father of the Bride: Part II

Double the pleasure! Double the fun! Annie and Nina are both preggers, and it's a heartwarming, if a bit saccharine, sequel.

Alice Shen
Alice Shen

Super Reviewer

½

Back in 1995, a famous incident occurred between Steve Martin and the British comedian Paul Kaye. In his guise as Dennis Pennis, the shocking and obnoxious celebrity reporter for The Sunday Show, Kaye approached Martin during a red carpet premiere and asked the question: "why are you not funny anymore?". Martin shrugged off the comment and walked away, but was reportedly so upset that he cancelled all upcoming press appearances. While Father of the Bride Part II is not directly connected to this anecdote, it has been held up as an example of Martin's comedic decline. Like Kevin Smith after him, Martin was accused of turning his back on the edgy, smart and wacky comedies that made him a star in favour of more schmaltzy, sentimental fare. But despite Kaye's remarks and whatever low expectations we may have of the rom-com genre, the end result is surprisingly heartwarming. You can understand the reservations that critics and punters alike would have going into this film. It's a quasi-remake of Father's Little Dividend, the 1951 sequel to the original Father of the Bride starring Spencer Tracy and Elizabeth Taylor. Martin's remake of the first film had received positive reviews four years prior to this, but he hadn't produced much to inspire confidence in the meantime. Only the previous year, he appeared in Mixed Nuts, Nora Ephron's hugely misjudged remake of the French black comedy Le Père Noël est une Ordure (which loosely translates as 'Santa is a scumbag'). Fears are partially allayed, however, by an examination of the talent behind the camera. Writer-director Charles Shyer and producer Nancy Meyers have a good track record with these kinds of stories; not only did they helm the remake of Father of the Bride, but they were behind Irreconcible Differences and Baby Boom back in the 1980s. The latter also starred Diane Keaton and resulted in a short-lived TV series which was, at their insistence, filmed without a laughter track. This move, which is still unusual for American shows, suggests that Shyer and Meyers want to emphasise the natural aspects of a given situation rather than rely on comic contrivances to further the plot. I've spoken in the past about how the likes of Saving Grace and Calendar Girls treat their older characters with great respect, in contrast to Hollywood's obsession with youth and showy glamour. And on one level, it is refreshing to find a Hollywood comedy which focusses much more on its older protagonists in a romantic manner. While the first film focussed a fair amount on the younger couple, with Martin and Keaton's scenes being built around reaction, they are very much at the centre of attention this time around. Shyer's approach, however, is very different to that of Nigel Cole in the films that I've cited. Cole's films pander to convention and rely on the individual performances within them to overcome these limitations: he creates a situation based upon recognisable archetypes and then uses his actors to put meat on the bones. Shyer, by contrast, uses Martin and Keaton's natural talent, chemistry and charisma to build up empathy with them as performers, and then constructs recognisable character traits around these performances. In the wrong hands they would simply be playing versions of themselves, like a lot of American comedians in films, but on this occasion it really pays off. While the film is a reasonably faithful remake of Father's Little Dividend, it differs from the original in one key plot point. Having Martin's character becoming a grandfather and a father again would have been unthinkable back in the 1950s, with Hollywood's idealisation of domesticity and set gender roles in films like Cinderella and High Society. But in the more liberal, touchy-feely 1990s, it's socially acceptable as well as being physically possible, and while it's not the first film to attempt this plot point, it is one of the more successful. The film still manages to replicate all the doubts and soul-searching of the male protagonist, substituting his misplacing the baby in the original with his panicking up to and including the deliveries. Steve Martin and Spencer Tracy may have little in common besides the colour of their hair - certainly Martin doesn't have the dramatic range of the back-to-back Oscar winner. But where Tracy brought naturalism, he manages to channel his zaniness and hilarious frustation into something very tender, crafting a dramatic performance with none of the creepy overtones of his later role in Shopgirl. It would have been very easy to make the central premise into a gimmick, constructing the film as a wacky comedy in which Martin's character was constantly running between two poorly written, overly demanding women. But Shyer resists going down the screwball route, giving us a respectful examination of pregnancy without over-egging the sentimentality - at least, not all the way through. Toward the film's climax, however, Shyer can't resist opening the taps a little bit on the physical comedy front. There's an over-long and somewhat over-played sequence where Franck (Martin Short) has to drag George to the car after the latter has overdosed on sleeping pills, having been up all night coping with the two pregnancies. It is funny, but it feels like a very deliberate concession to a younger audience, who probably emphasise more with funny accents and slapstick than the travails of a late-middle-aged couple. In a nutstell, most of the problems with Father of the Bride Part II occur when it tries to lay on the comedy a little too thickly. The most glaring example is Short, who reprises his role from the first film. Like Steve Martin, Short is a graduate of Saturday Night Live, making his name through a series of loud, in-your-face characters which challenged our notions of good taste. But while Martin has grown up and rightfully tones things down on this occasion, Short is allowed to run wild and become annoying. His character is essentially an SNL skit, and like a lot of SNL characters it wears out its welcome pretty quickly. Likewise, some of the domestic comedy is a little irritating. The dinner party conversations, such as those over the selling of the house, tip over into the weaker sections of Woody Allen's back catalogue, in which the fears and neuroses of the characters make the plot come to a standstill. If you're a fan of Allen's work you'll probably appreciate these scenes a lot more, but they do come across as clunky when much of the comedy surrounding them has been warmer and more welcoming. There are other issues with the film too, which are rooted more in Shyer's script than in the performers' abilities. Once the second pregnancy has been announced, the film does become extremely predictable. Admittedly we're not so constantly aware of the oncoming cliches that the plot is completely derailed, and throwing in a completely left-field twist or two could have damaged what empathy we have with the characters. But just as Annie Hall worked by not having our central pairing end up together, it would have been nice if the pay-off had come about in a slightly more original way. When it comes down to it, however, there is enough emotional attachment in Father of the Bride Part II to make us overlook these little technical defficiencies. It's a heart-first film, in which we go with all the events and developments that occur even as our head compiles a list of potential objections. The scenes with George reminiscing with his now-grown daughter are really touching, as is the final sequence of him between the two waiting rooms, standing like all expectant fathers in that middle ground between abject fear and beaming pride. Special credit should go to Jane Adams as Dr. Eisenberg; she plays her part without any fuss, keeping these last scenes rooted and believable. Father of the Bride Part II is both an enjoyable sequel and a perfectly capable remake. While many will still point to the Tracy films as superior, this is still an enjoyable and touching comedy-drama with a number of well-written characters and good performances from Martin and Keaton. Those who have no capacity for sentimentality, even when it's done properly, should probably look elsewhere for entertainment. But for those of us who don't mind giving into tears, it's time pretty well spent.

Daniel Mumby
Daniel Mumby

Super Reviewer

½

"I enjoyed this one almost as much as I did the first film. It still has the same charm and simplicity as the first. The chemistry between all the actors is just as strong as the first film. I love Steve Martin and Diane Keaton together. It just seems to come so easily for them. Martin Short brings the laughs with his quirky character. Both the first, and second film are great family films. I never get tired of watching either. See it if you get the chance."

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♥˩ƳИИ ƜѲѲƉƧ♥

Super Reviewer

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