Wedding Crashers

Wedding Crashers is lewd and profane. It revels with gratuitous nudity, sex jokes, and random silliness. And it's a lot of fun. It's been a while since there was a comedy that was happily rated R, and Wedding Crashers is a fun trip into the world of debauchery that ultimately (and predictably, and sadly) grows a heart. The story is thus; men want to get laid. A few realize that a good way to get women is at weddings, when emotions are on overdrive. So mediators John Beckwith (Owen Wilson, Meet the Fockers, The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou) and Jeremy Gray (Vince Vaughn, Mr. and Mrs. Smith, Be Cool) spend their time crashing weddings. This gives them a string of beautiful willing women for quick trysts before the next weekend, and wedding, rolls around.

Wilson and Vaughn are in familiar territory. They are playing variations on characters they play in many movies. Wilson is the laid back everyman, and Vaughn is the uptight motor mouth. The success of each movie they inhabit depends on the chemistry and the script. If one is wrong, the film can get annoying very fast. That is not the case here. Wilson and Vaughn play off each other like old friends. And Steve Faber and Bob Fisher's script is hilariously profane. Gray and Beckwith are two shallow but likable guys who are not afraid to lie through their teeth in order to sleep with a woman.

Nevertheless, every movie must develop a story, and Wedding Crashers falters a bit when Beckwith meets Claire Cleary (Rachel McAdams, The Notebook, Mean Girls). She is the maid of honor at her sister's wedding, and her beauty and sense of humor immediately attracts Beckwith's attention. He decides that she is the one who he will bed, but proving so becomes harder than he expected. Gray targets her relative Gloria (Isla Fisher, I [Heart] Huckabees, Scooby-Doo), who is an easy mark but after the deed turns into a psychotic clinger. Gray wants to leave as soon as possible, but Beckwith wants to keep pressing on with Claire. Cleary's father (Christopher Walken, Around the Bend, The Stepford Wives) is a high ranking government official, and is so impressed with Beckwith's knowledge and charm that he invites him to their house for the weekend. Oh, and he also believes they are relatives.

So the madness continues in a different setting. Beckwith continues to try to woo Claire, who has an obvious attraction to him, but is also attached to a jerk of a boyfriend. Meanwhile, Gloria proves even more bizarre, Claire's mother (Jane Seymour, Touching Wild Horses, The New Swiss Family Robinson) puts the moves on Beckwith, and his secret looms over everything. Director David Dobkin (Shanghai Knights, Clay Pigeons) has a lot of things going on at the same time, so nobody will get bored. There's also a very anarchic feel to Wedding Crashers, with the two main guys bumbling through the weekend by the skin of their teeth. McAdams is as beautiful as ever, but the biggest surprise is Fisher. Her maniacal over-the-top performance steals the show from the stars and she is the most memorable element in the film.

Haro Rates It: Not Bad.
1 hour, 59 minutes, Rated R for sexual content/nudity and language.

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