Muriel finds life in Porpoise Spit, Australia dull and spends her days alone in her room listening to Abba music and dreaming of her wedding day. Slight problem, Muriel has never had a date. Then she steals some money to go on a tropical vacation, meets a wacky friend, changes her name to Mariel, and turns her world upside down.Written by
When Brice is on top of Muriel on the sofa, Muriel's arm changes from by her head, to gripping Brice's arm. See more »
I have a telefax to read.
Keep your eye on them journalist bastards.
"To Bill Heslop and Family. Hazel and I were sorry to hear of the passing of Betty. We are thinking of you in your time of sorrow." Signed, the Honourable Bob Hawke, former Prime Minister of Australia.
What are they doing?
They're writing it down.
I'll bet they are. Put that in your papers, you mongrel bastards. I've still got friends. How many families get telegrams from former prime ministers when somebody dies? ...
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The theatrical release clearly showed a woman dressed as Wonder Woman and a man dressed as Robin during the talent show scene when Muriel and Rhonda are presented with the over-sized check and champagne. In the DVD/video release, Robin is only partly shown and Wonder Woman is not shown at all. See more »
Muriel's Wedding is an Australian gem that perhaps suffers somewhat from being earmarked as a 'comedy'. Certainly there are plenty of laughs, but this film is no mere cheap and cheesy crowd-pleaser. As well as dealing with the insularity and cattiness of her hometown, Porpoise Spit, Muriel also must face the suicide of her mother and paralysing of her best friend. Yet, despite these tragedies, Muriel manages to come out on top, and at the same time strike a blow for anybody who has ever been snubbed by the in-crowd.
The characterisation in the movie is brilliant, particularly that of Muriel's family of no-hopers. Hoping to shed the title of "useless" bestowed on her by her father, Muriel (Toni Collette) absconds with the family's savings to an island resort, where she meets vivacious, straight-talking Rhonda (Rachel Griffiths). Rhonda is the catalyst for Muriel to become a new person, but unfortunately Muriel takes her obsession with weddings one step too far and marries just for the sake of it. She thinks she has finally "made it", but comes to realise that there's more to life than public image.
The soundtrack is a gloriously appropriate ABBA symphony, although both Dancing Queen and the film's original theme tune are over-utilised. It is surely partly due to ABBA's pleasant familiarity that it is so easy to become emotionally involved in the film, and the viewer will likely experience the whole gamut of feelings during its course. The finale, whilst upbeat, fortunately doesn't stumble into the realm of saccharine moralism (which so many filmmakers seem to think it is necessary to conclude with). Instead, we feel the triumph along with Muriel and Rhonda as they bid a raucous farewell to Porpoise Spit.
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