Monday, January 31, 2011

30 Days of Oscar: Day 4 - Four Weddings and a Funeral

Movie: Four Weddings and a Funeral
Year:1994
Nominations: Best Picture, Best Original Screenplay
Wins: I'm sure no one is surprised this movie did not actually win.  Beaten by Forrest Gump and Pulp Fiction respectively.

In a year where the best picture nominees are 3 of the greatest movies ever, Forrest Gump, Pulp Fiction, The Shawshank Redemption, with Quiz Show and Four Weddings rounding it out, it's hard to figure out what other movies were snubbed to make a spot for a Hugh Grant romantic comedy.  Not that I don't love this movie to bits, but I gotta say I was pretty shocked that one of its nominations was for Best Picture.  Kristin Scott Thomas, John Hannah, Andie McDowell, and a series of cameos by well known British actors.  Everyone can appreciate the humor and unease provided by weddings, and this movie has 3 major ones and then a secret one, in addition to a very heartfelt funeral.  When Hugh Grant is seated at a table at one wedding with all of his exes and they start discussing one another you squirm watching him handle that, and then when different people from the wedding appear as the bride and groom at the next one, there's a terrific continuity of all the characters including the passage of time.  The awkwardness continues when Grant gets stuck in a bathroom while the bride and groom get it on in the bedroom and he can't get out.  The main focus is Grant's search to find love with Andie McDowell's American Carrie.  She does get the worst line in cinema: "Is it still raining?" when she's drenched and dripping rain off her eyelashes.  It's just silly. 

However, my favorite scene is a sad one from the funeral, but it just reminds me of my love of John Hannah.

1 comment:

The Mad Hatter said...

Guess there's something to be said for charming writing, eh?

This nomination sorta marked the dawn of a particular position in the Best Picture race.

Nowadays it's called the LITTLE MISS SUNSHINE seed, and ever since '94 titles like BABE, THE FULL MONTY, JUNO, and SIDEWAYS have taken advantage of it as lighter titles The Academy loves.

For my money, this ranks as one of the very best classes of Best Pic nominees in Oscar history, and certainly in my lifetime.