Runaway Bride (1999)
Pretty Woman has now been regarded as the ultimate romantic comedy and has a soft spot in most people’s hearts. Mostly ones with estrogen pumping through their system. So the theory is to reunite the two leads, the director, even some supporting characters and try to have lightning strike twice. And how it comes out depends on the chromosome make-up of the person you talk to.
Runaway Bride never deserts the standard romantic comedy formula. It never diverts from the path, and plays every note pitch perfect. Problem is I’ve seen this a hundred times before in a hundred different movies. So this all makes for a most predictable and un-amusing excuse for the reunion. It also gives you the sense of a “been there, done that.”
What the movie tries to do to give it some “distance” from most romantic comedies is to show that Julia has some kind of psychological problems with marriage that remain the movie’s mystery. Too bad these problems are never fully looked at and when Richard Gere comes sweeping in and eventually takes away and wins over Julia, and all her problems are suddenly gone. Wait just a minute, it’s not that too easily wrapped.
The leads have good chemistry and there are some humorous moments, but this is a movie for people who like the paint-by-the-numbers romantic comedies. The ones that love the formula they can’t get enough of. The ones that just want to smile and be won over by the usual trappings. By all means go, this movie won’t disappoint because it never has the courage to try a different route.
Nate’s Grade: C