Following the fortunes of thirtysomethings Charles (Grant) and his bunch of mates as they meet up at the various titular functions, talk crap and try to move on with their lives. At wedding number one, the commitment-phobe Charles meets Carrie (MacDowell) and everything changes.
You've got, orbiting the main couple, the token gay chum (Callow), the token razor tongued bachelor girl (Scott-Thomas), the token useless toff (Fleet) and the token funky, spunky flatmate. Too many details on this, and you start giving away the twists.
Interestingly, it doesn't seem to matter that virtually nothing is said about any of the five characters - what they do for a living, for instance, or where precisely they live - because each is made interesting in their own moment, and the story is so well constructed that all you actually want to know is who's marrying whom next and what's going to happen at the wedding.
Admittedly there are irritating (though understandable) sops to the US market (the weddings are lavish and chocolate boxy, one of the gang is "the seventh richest man in England", etc.) and some of the touches are cliched (yes! the best man does lose the rings!), but the film is acted, directed, and edited so well for comedy, and Grant is such a charming, amusing revelation, that these criticisms fade away.
The guerilla Brit Pack filmmakers currently at work may be young and thrusting, but Four Weddings proves that there is no substitute for sheer professionalism and, most importantly, a first-rate script.
Possibly the most 'British' modern film commited to celluloid. Luckily, it is also funny, agreeably sweet and exceptionally well acted and directed.
Reviewed by Phil Thomas