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Few Best Men, A


Stars: Xavier Samuel, Laura Brent, Kris Marshall, Kevin Bishop, Tim Draxl, Olivia Newton-John, Jonathan Biggins, Rebel Wilson

Director: Stephan Elliott

A broad Australian comedy about a wedding at which practically everything that could possibly go wrong does. Even letting the Marx Brothers loose wouldn't cause this much chaos. Not that you should should assume that this is a feast of laughs: it isn't. You'll chuckle happily a few times, but the shenanigans are too often downright disgusting when they should be leaving us helpless with laughter.

Brit David (Samuel) falls in love with Aussie Mia (Brent) on the holiday island of Tuvalu, and proposes at the end of their time there. For some reason, David has to arrive the day before the wedding, bringing with him his three best friends, Tim (Marshall), a lout straight out of a C4 sitcom, idiot Graham (Bishop), who throws up anything with cheese in, and Luke (Draxl), who keeps crying at the thought of a lost girlfriend.

Once in Australia, Tom and Graham stop off at a drug dealer (as you do) and accidentally walk off with his entire stash. Meanwhile, David discovers that Mia's father (Biggins) is a control-freak senator who expects her to follow in his footsteps.

As the dealer hotfoots it to the wedding, the bride's father's pet ram, the symbol of his power, is kidnapped by the boys on their drunken stag night, and ends up ingesting the dealer's entire stash. This, naturally, has to be retrieved from its innards...

But enough of this supremely daft plot: the leads are pretty but bland, and the rest of the performances pretty rough and ready, with the exception of Newton-John as the bride's mum, who kicks over the traces in style after snorting some of the dealer's heroin. One or two sight gags do tickle the funnybone, but there aren't enough.

In fairness, I have heard best man's speeches almost as embarrassing as the one we end up with here, but not quite.

David Quinlan

Australia 2011. UK Distributor: Buena Vista International. Colour by deluxe.
97 minutes. Not widescreen. UK certificate: 15.

Guidance ratings (out of 3): Sex/nudity 1, Violence/Horror 0, Drugs 3, Swearing 2.

Review date: 26 Aug 2012