Robert Altman’s ‘A Wedding’; aka You’ve Missed a Trick Today, People

April 29, 2011 by Simon Kinnear in Opinion, Retro with 0 Comments

Apparently, there’s a wedding on today. Unfortunately, it’s not A Wedding, Robert Altman’s ace 1978 ensemble piece about all the crazy goings-on that accompany the nuptial process.

I’ve only ever seen it once, during a 1996 Channel 4 Altman season. To the best of my knowledge, it’s never been on telly since, and it’s never been officially released in Britain on DVD, although you can buy the Region 0 Australian disc. Oh, and it’s on YouTube if you’re that way inclined (see below for Part 1).

Somebody’s missed a serious trick here because, if it’s as good as I remember it, it’s the definitive wedding movie, a perfect marriage (geddit?) of form and content. Nobody does this stuff as well as Altman, and the film coasts on that sense of being in the midst of all that panic and narcissism and gossip that comes with the big day.

It’d certainly be a lot more fun to watch today than the stately, reverential boredom of what’s cracking off at Westminster Abbey.

Oh well, failing that there’s always King Ralph

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