A Few Best Men (2012)
Some people can be very hostile, and these are the ones that usually shout the loudest. Here, these are the people have said the film is just not funny. For a comedy, this is something of a handicap. If it were true.
Writer Dean Craig has done a funeral (well two, if you want to be picky about it) and now he has turned his enviable scriptwriting talents to a wedding. 'Death At A Funeral' in 2007 was witty and deft, even if hardly anybody saw it. The American remake was nowhere near as accomplished, but garnered a massive audience, compared to its original inspiration.
Here, whilst on holiday in Tuvalu, young Brit David meets wife to be, a beautiful Australian girl by the name of Mia. They quickly fall head over heels in love with one another and despite an abundance of holiday romance evidence to the contrary, decide right there and then that they will get married as soon as possible.
And 'as soon as possible' is practically no time at all. David flies home, tells his best friends that he's getting married and invites them all to come to his wedding as the eponymous best men, in Australia. Mia's father is an Australian Senator and as such, their home is sumptuously beautiful, which is handy, as this is where the wedding takes place.
As with all of Craig's writing, the content is wry and ostensibly written with a British palate. So much so as to maybe even alienate some audience members that fail to quite get it. The jokes usually involve bottoms, toilets or farts or even a combination thereof and equally reliably, events almost inevitably end up ever so slightly shy of farcical. This can become tiresome if the writing is not up to scratch, but as mentioned, this is not an issue here.
The cast do admirable work here also, with only a couple of faces immediately recognisable to the occasional movie-goer. Kris Marshall and Kevin Bishop are already established television comedy actors in the UK and they both perform well enough, without really stretching themselves. Laura Brent (Narnia) plays the part of Mia and Xavier Samuel (Twilight, Anonymous) provides the audience with the often terrified and always confused groom David.
This is enjoyable enough, with the requisite laughs to make it funnier than most Hollywood productions with A-list comedians and ten times the budget. It's not hilarious, but Craig's work is often understated and more about the cringe than the snort. This much is true here, as it was in the original Death At A Funeral. We can only hope that Hollywood doesn't pick up on this also and create a completely pointless remake of it.
Lastly, Olivia Newton-John may be sixty-odd by now, but still looks great and still retains the same comic timing she enjoyed from her days in Grease.
Worth a watch, but don't be in a hurry.