(L, S) 1 exclamatory profanity, reference to condoms, and parents talk about fornicating before marriage.

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En route from a semester of architectural study in Rome, 22-year-old Annie Banks announces her engagement to a youth she met abroad. Her mother is thrilled, but the news wreaks havoc on the soon-to-be FATHER OF THE BRIDE in this updated modernization of Vincente Minnelli’s 1950 MGM classic.

The wedding becomes a comic foil for the story, with father George objecting to everything and everyone (from the prospective groom and in-laws to out-of-town wedding guests)–especially how expensive it all is ($250 a head!).

George’s hysteria seems to be fueled by his intense devotion to Annie and fear of losing his identity once she is gone. He is not ready for the parenting part of his life to end.

Steve Martin is funny yet poignant in this role. Memorable scenes include a Tom Jones imitation in a too tight tuxedo, and George’s snooping around in his future in-law’s house, eventually falling into their swimming pool.

Adding to George’s troubles is Franck Eggelhoffer, a foppish wedding coordinator with teased hair and a thick accent of undetermined origin. He persuades the Banks’ to purchase a wedding “caaulk” for $1260. “That’s more than my first car!” moans George. “This is the 90’s, Mr. Banks,” quips Franck.

Refreshingly, FATHER OF THE BRIDE affirms old-fashioned family values and the importance of relationships. The film is a must-see for anyone engaged, newlywed, or married. Fathers will relate to George’s feverish desire to know all about this “Mr. Right” the daughter has chosen. Mothers and daughters will appreciate the emotional tensions that accompany wedding plans.

The movie’s only detractions are: one exclamatory profanity; a “don’t forget to fasten your condom” slip-up that George accidently makes when Annie and her fiance go out for the evening; and, there is a brief discussion in which Nina reminds George that “when we were engaged, we did it in almost every room of your parent’s house.” Aside from these flaws, FATHER OF THE BRIDE is a heart warming father-daughter story that reflects family life in the 1990’s.

Quality: - Content: -1
Quality: - Content: -1