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My Best Friend's Wedding
Starring Julia Roberts, Dermot Mulroney and Cameron Diaz; Rupert Everett
Screenplay by Ronald Bass
Directed by P.J. Hogan

IN SHORT: Julia will never be the woman scorned, but it is supporting actor Rupert Everett who steals the flick. Go for one. Be surprised by the other.

Cranky asks the ladies and gentlemen to kindly separate themselves into gender-distinctive groups so that he can heart to heart with both of y'all, individual like. Guys first...

Here's the sitch. You got Julianne Potter, aka Julia Roberts, on the one hand; one month of the incredible hot nasty back when you were in college and close to nine years more of the bestest friendship ever stuff. You promised to marry her if you both hit 28 single; your watch has stopped and she's almost reached zero hour. On the other hand you get Kimmy Wallace (Cameron Diaz). She's younger. She's, in her own way, prettier and she's rich to boot. Plus, she's absolutely nuts about you, so you popped the question. Here's the sixty four thousand dollar question: did you make a mistake turning down Julia Roberts? Think carefully out in the hall. Send in the ladies, please.

OK, Ladies your turn. First, I apologize for making you wait but that's the important part. Here's the clock. It goes tick... tick... tick, you know the routine. Here's Michael O'Neal (Dermot Mulroney) your best guy friend and floating in the back of your cranium is the promise he made to marry you if you both hit 28 single. Tick... tick... tick... and your birthday is three weeks away and the phone rings and he pops the wrong question -- 'cuz he's marrying someone who's younger and blonder and richer than you are, and she wants to be your best friend, too. Do you bite the bullet and buy a present, or do you behave like the underhanded, terribly despicable person you know you are and fly off to destroy an engagement in the four days that are left before rings are exchanged?

You can ponder the answers to your respective questions in the comfort and quiet of your homes, or you can let the aforementioned actors figure it all out for you in the exceptionally delightful My Best Friend's Wedding. Roberts is in fine form, as the woman who discovers what she wants when it's way too late. By any standard this would be a better than average rental, except for one thing.

His name is Rupert Everett and he steals the movie with the help of decidedly off-center scenes. In "reality" Roberts' gay boss, he is brought in to the story to pose as her betrothed, and breaks into Dionne Warwick's "I Say a Little Prayer" while describing their "courtship" at a luncheon. As the rest of the restaurant joins in, Roberts does her best to slither under the table. You may slide to the floor from laughing too hard. Everett layers exaggerated physical comedy on top of the verbal, and to give any of those jokes away would take the fun out of the performance. Hats off to Julia for letting him steal the show.

My Best Friend's Wedding takes every convention of romantic movies and turns 'em on their ear. For this credit screenwriter Ronald Bass. His dialog sparkles, the jokes are funny (excepting the ones that are lewd -- they're even funnier) and he manages to make Julia Roberts the villain without making her the bad guy.

On average, a first run movie ticket will run you Eight Bucks. Were Cranky able to set his own price to My Best Friend's Wedding, he would have paid...

7.00

My Best Friend's Wedding was delightful. It's a terrific date movie. See it.

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