The Wedding Date was a movie Id wanted to see after having seen the trailer a while ago, but having seen it last night, I have to say that it was very disappointing. The plot goes along these lines: Kat Ellis is single and, being invited to her sisters wedding in England, wants to have someone along to make the best-man (and her ex) insanely jealous. In order to achieve this somewhat less than lofty goal she finds and employ a male escort (Nick Mercer) to act as her boyfriend. When she gets to England the inevitable happens they start to form a bond that goes beyond employer/employee, but everything is complicated by her oddball family and the many dramas surrounding the wedding itself. Her mother is the worst of the bunch, with no tact whatsoever and constantly reminding everyone that they had thought (and hoped) that Kat would be the first of her daughters to get married. Her ex, Jeffrey (Jeffrey Sheffield) seems to be wanting to make up for his past mistakes and how he treated her but is he genuine, and is that what she really wants?
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From that fairly promising storyline and a fairly decent-looking cast, The Wedding Date makes a complete mess of it. Dermot Mulroney is pretty good as Nick, but I was never particularly convinced by Debra Messing at Kat. In fact most of the acting was sub-par the actors seemed to have little or no sense of timing, and most of them had a pretty limited range. I quite liked Jack Davenport as the husband to be, and Peter Egan as the father of the bride was quite good, but otherwise there was little to recommend the cast here. The script was likewise disappointing, being full of predictable twists and stuttering dialogue. Throughout the film it managed to be nearlyfunny that is to say, you felt that it would have actually been funny if the acting had been a little better, the timing a little more comedic, or the dialogue a little sharper. As it was there were few genuinely funny moments (mostly involving people asking how Kat had managed to find Nick I looked him up in Yellow Pages, Did you pick him out of a catalogue or something? also when Ed asked him how he knows so much about women and stuff, Nick replies because Im a hooker too), but most of the comedy falls rather flat. There was a tiny element of culture clash too (Kat lived in America and Nick was American), but this wasn't really used to any useful effect.
Though the actors must bear a lot of the responsibility for this film not working, the direction does leave a lot to be desired. There just wasnt the right sort of continuity between scenes and in some the actors almost looked as if they didnt quite know what they were actually doing there. The music score was okay and there are some decent songs in the soundtrack, though somehow they sound tacked-on.
The script does mildly redeem itself with a few relatively clever discussions between Nick and Kat, mainly centring on his theory that every woman has the love life she chooses, why he thinks that, and how he can explain it in a way that Kat cant quite manage to be offended by. In general though, the main weakness of The Wedding Date as a romantic comedy is that is doesnt give you characters that you can really care about, with few being even remotely likable. It wasnt the worst film ever made but I found it really disappointing, especially as the idea had quite a lot of potential (albeit it was basically Pretty Woman with the gender roles reversed).
Director: Claire Kilner
Year of release: 2005
Runtime: 90 minutes
Rating: 12A (UK) PG-13 (USA) for sexual content including dialogue
The movie was originally going to be called "Something Borrowed".
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Suitability For Children: Suitable for Children Age 13 and Older