Essentially an old-fashioned romantic comedy with a few dark twists, My Best Friend's Wedding marks the return of Julia Roberts to the genre. She plays Julianne Potter, a writer of culinary guides. As her 28th birthday draws near, Julianne eagerly anticipates a proposal from her handsome former college buddy Michael O'Neal (Dermot Mulroney). The best of friends during those years (though Julianne has always secretly loved him), they vowed that if both were still single at age 28, they would marry each other. She is justifiably excited when the phone rings and it is Michael; but her joy quickly turns to shock when he obliviously invites her to Chicago to attend his wedding to innocent, sweet-natured heiress Kimmy Wallace (Cameron Diaz). Enraged, the jealous and hurt Julianne visits her buddy and editor George (Rupert Everett) and to him vows to stop at nothing to win Michael back. At first what follows is standard-issue screwball comedy. Julianne enacts a plot to turn Michael away from Kimmy and the plot backfires making the heiress look even better to her besotted fiance. After several failed attempts, the tale turns blacker as Julianne becomes almost insanely desperate and begins doing things that are less cute than awful to her romantic rival. Meanwhile, George remains the one voice of sanity, sort of a Greek chorus, for Julianne. As the tale progresses, each of the protagonists is led to the point where they must examine their true motives, behavior and emotions, thus adding a depth not usually found in this type of story.
Rating: PG-13 (For one use of strong language and brief sex-related humor.)