Wedding Crashers

The Wedding Crashers is a romantic/buddy movie comedy starring Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson. They play a pair of divorce mediators who like to crash weddings in order to pick up girls. On the surface this is a typical paint by numbers Hollywood buddy movie but the sharp script and the cast make this the best comedy of the year so far.

Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson

John Beckwith (Wilson) and Jeremy Grey (Vaughn) are best friends, they work together, both have silver tongues and enjoy nothing more than crashing weddings to enjoy free booze, food, entertainment and most of all to bed women who are predisposed to their shamelessly manipulative advances. Jeremy has a set of rules for crashing weddings passed on from the mythical womaniser Chas (Will Ferrell). They always concoct a back-story and create characters for themselves and they are honour bound to never leave a fellow crasher behind.

The two hit a run of weddings and strike lucky every time charming a range of people with their patter but John is beginning to get sick of the lifestyle. Jeremy persuades him to go to one last wedding, a huge event for the daughter of the Treasury Secretary (Christopher Walken). It is here that both of them meet their match with hilarious results.

The plot of the film is pure cliche and the direction is standard, what really makes it work is the slick script and the acting performances. The film relies on how likeable the two male leads are and the supporting cast does a tremendous job too. Vince Vaughn is undoubtedly the star of the show, he can sound callous and yet you still root for him, he has a Jack Nicholson sense of style and charisma which is irresistible. Wilson acts in his typical laidback style, often playing the straight man to Vaughn´s exasperated rants and it is this interplay which provides the best laughs of the movie.

Vince Vaughn hits the dancefloor

While Jeremy (Vaughn) gets caught up with the clingy nutcase Gloria (Isla Fisher) John (Wilson) begins to fall for her engaged older sister Claire (Rachel McAdams). Naturally both are the daughters of the intimidating Secretary Cleary (Walken) and so the pair are invited back to the family home for the weekend. The Cleary family are more than a little strange though and John has his work cut out for him getting around Claire´s psychotic fiance. Meanwhile Jeremy is undergoing a nightmare of epic proportions as he stumbles from one excruciatingly embarrassing or painful situation to the next.

The situations are often familiar and the story plays out in a predictable fashion but there are plenty of witty lines and laughs along the way. Vaughn is really on top form here with faultless timing and beautifully casual delivery, his passion for the pleasures of womanising fun is infectious but his thin veneer of callousness soon begins to slip away as Gloria (Fisher) continually surprises him with her general insanity.

This is a great comedy, light on slush and heavy on laughter. The supporting cast are all good, the leads are excellent and the writing is clever and has enough of a touch of cynicism to prevent things from getting too cheesy. The pacing of the film is also very good, the laughs come thick and fast and despite a bit of a lag towards the inevitable romantic ending this still leaves you smiling. The Wedding Crashers is great entertainment and cannot fail to crack you up, the best Hollywood comedy for a long time.

Reviewed by Simon Hill

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