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Runaway Bride (1999)

Film review: Runaway Bride (1999), directed by Garry Marshall

In Runaway Bride from 1999, we see Julia Roberts and Richard Gere reunited on screen again. Remember Pretty Woman? Runaway Bride is almost, but not quite, entirely unlike Pretty Woman.

Maggie Carpenter (Roberts) is a woman who becomes notorious for running away at the altar. “Ike” Graham (Gere) is a newspaper columnist who writes a column about her, containing some “facts” made up by one of Maggie’s jilted grooms.

Maggie reads the column, writes a letter to the editor pointing out all the factual mistakes – which could land them in a law suit – and Graham is fired. He’s convinced he’s right in his analysis of the infamous bride and goes to her home town to investigate, as she’s getting ready to marry groom #4. Question is, will she finally get married, or is she going to do a U-turn in church and run off again?

Also starring Joan Cusack as Peggy Flemming.

It being a romantic comedy, of course the plot is not so much “is she going to get married to the intended groom” but rather “watch the two leads fall in love”, because you know that’s going to happen, it’s the whole point of the film. Question is just how soon they can go from outright hostility to smooching, and hopefully enjoy the ride there.

And enjoy it I did. When they finally kissed, I burst out laughing, because it was quite funny how it happened. Won’t spoil it, though. To say they “finally kissed” isn’t a spoiler, because you know they will, eventually. I thought it was a cute film, got you thinking a bit – she did look rather terrified on those wedding videos, and why was she so afraid?

Kept on wondering who looked after Ike’s cat when he was away all that time. He had a cat, she had a dog – were they just there as symbols to say “lookit how different they are”?

It wasn’t the sort of movie that has you laughing out loud all the time, and while bits were amusing it wasn’t terribly funny as such. Romantic, however, yes. Felt like glancing over at Mr T and asking “you taking notes?” (He wasn’t, for the record.)

Saw Pretty Woman some time last year and while it was romantic, it was also creepy, in a way. I mean, she’s a prostitute, he’s a high-flying businessman and he does pay to have sex with her, that’s why they meet in the first place. This film has none of that, fortunately. It’s just two people who meet and eventually fall in love and it’s really sweet and gives you a warm, fuzzy feeling. Like a romantic film should do. Not the best movie I’ve ever seen, sure, but it was nice and I wouldn’t mind seeing it again. And it’s even won awards (yes, plural!), fancy that.

Quote of the day – on the perfect proposal:

Look, I guarantee there’ll be tough times. I guarantee that at some point, one or both of us is gonna want to get out of this thing. But I also guarantee that if I don’t ask you to be mine, I’ll regret it for the rest of my life, because I know, in my heart, you’re the only one for me.

Traxy

An easily distracted Swedish introvert residing in Robin Hood Country (Nottingham, UK) with a husband and two cats. She's an eager participant in tabletop and play-by-post roleplaying, woodworking, photography and European travel, when there's not a plague on.

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