“I would like to say a few words about weddings. I’ve just been through one. Not my own. My daughter’s. Someday in the far future I may be able to remember it with tender indulgence, but not now. I always used to think that marriages were a simple affair. Boy meets girl. Fall in love. They get married. Have babies. Eventually the babies grow up and meet other babies. They fall in love. Get married. Have babies. And so on and on and on. Looked at that way, it’s not only simple, it’s downright monotonous. But I was wrong. I figured without the wedding.”
The other night I watched the Spencer Tracy/Elizabeth Taylor version of Father of the Bride. I thought it was very funny, especially Spence as the father Stan, who was losing his little girl to her new husband. I though that his dialogue was very witty and you could empathise with his feelings about his now grown up daughter.
“You fathers will understand. You have a little girl. She looks up to you. You’re her oracle. You’re her hero. And then the day comes when she gets her first permanent wave and goes to her first real party, and from that day on, you’re in a constant state of panic.”
Elizabeth Taylor is stunningly beautiful as Kay, Stan’s only daughter who is about to be married off. Much credit has to be given to Vincent Minelli’s direction, as when we see Kay in her wedding dress in three mirrors no less, she is just gorgeous. But Tracy is the real standout in the film. He brings great warmth, wit and empathy to the role of Stan. Some of the little one-liners that he made had me chuckling out loud. I think I prefer this version to the Steve Martin film from the 1990s.