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The Wedding Party (1997)

Thank God He Met Lizzie (original title)
The romantic myth is exposed for Guy when he is plagued by memories of an old girlfriend on his wedding day.


Cherie Nowlan


Alexandra Long

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3 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Richard Roxburgh ... Guy Jamieson
Cate Blanchett ... Lizzie
Frances O'Connor ... Jenny
Linden Wilkinson ... Poppy
John Gaden John Gaden ... Dr. O'Hara
Genevieve Mooy Genevieve Mooy ... Mrs. Jamieson
Michael K. Ross Michael K. Ross ... Mr. Jamieson
Melissa Ippolito Melissa Ippolito ... Catriona younger
Elena Pavli ... Catriona older
Craig Rasmus Craig Rasmus ... Dominic
Rhett Walton Rhett Walton ... Tony
Jeanette Cronin ... Yvette
Arthur Angel ... George
Wadih Dona ... Angelo (as Wahid Dona)
Celia Ireland ... Cheryl


Guy marries Lizzie. Dreamy Guy wanders around at his own wedding reception, recalling fond days of the girlfriend that got away; his long-time, de facto relationship with the warm and funny Jenny. Written by L.H. Wong <lhw@sfs.org.sg>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


The love of your life... isn't always the one you marry.


Comedy | Drama | Romance


R | See all certifications »






Release Date:

20 November 1997 (Australia) See more »

Also Known As:

The Wedding Party See more »


Box Office


$2,500,000 (estimated)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs


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Did You Know?


Feature film directorial debut of Cherie Nowlan. See more »


[first lines]
Party Goer: What a great party!
See more »


Written by Andy McCluskey (as A. McCluskey), Paul Humphreys (as P. Humphreys) and Gordian Troeller (as G. Troeller)
Performed by Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark (uncredited?)
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User Reviews

Embossments of Memory
15 October 2006 | by tedgSee all my reviews

There's something about Australian film. Canada has some filmmakers worth watching, many more as a percentage than nearly anywhere. But they are of all sorts, many different worlds as if being Canadian were only a gateway to imagination.

Australia is different. There's something distinct about Australian film-making and acting. You can see it permeate all the gems from that place and from people from that place. I like it because it is deeply rooted in the sort of self-reference I study. But I also appreciate it because it serves the way I watch movies: the effects of each one giving me footholds and crevices in exploring the next.

I watched this because it has Cate; simple enough. Cate does do some Cate-ish things toward the end, and they are useful, but the stuff she creates is a sort of emotional framing device for the real matter of the thing, which is a finished but not finished romance.

Now you have to know that I am coming at an appreciation of this in part because I know it is not the story that matters, but how the story unfolds. Romance and movies are tied in this way, allure. Seduction. Reward.

I'd like to recommend this to you because of how it is put together, and the deftness of how it handles how romance and love relate to one another. I guarantee that if you watch this with someone else, you two will come away with different notions of what you have seen. And can I give a higher compliment? Its about a relationship as seen from another one. One great choice is that the two lovers aren't defined. The attraction and the failure aren't explained. He's sort of stuffy and she sort of aggressively grabs life, but things are left vague beyond that. We see the milestones of their relationship but none of the machinery. It must have taken significant disciple to open things this way to judge by how rarely we see it.

So we have this arc, this huge arc of love. And we have it presented openly and more important, cinematically. There's mastery here. In the little ways things are revealed. You'll know it from the first scene which is a very long tracking shot in a house party, where we see many parallel seductions. Its the little compositions that matter.

At the wedding reception, for example, there's introspective banter between two strangers as he first explains why there are no "types" of women left for him to accept and she counters with several certain capture strategies that we know would each work in the short run.

There are dozens of little annotations like this.

Two scenes to watch for. I imagine these two were the first to appear in the writer's mind.

Our couple have been living together for years and are decorating the Christmas tree. They are casually nude in that way that is past the honeymoon. They haven't had sex in months and that knowledge is haunting them. They both know something is over and are wondering what that implies. She is on a ladder and he is holding her legs, his cheek against her buttock, wondering. He turns to place his face in her crack and she gently but firmly swats him away with a decoration, his face but not his support. Its perfect drama by itself and in the larger flow.

Another scene. He is getting married to another woman later. The first woman isn't at the wedding but her friend is. This person is as "crazy about life" and impulse compared to the first love as that love is to the new wife. He approaches her for a dance. She awkwardly starts with some club moves, you know the dance moves that tell small stories. He interrupts and draws her close in for a tender dance instead. Its an amazing set of choices all around.

So you'll want to see this, if you love competent cinematic storytelling. And especially if you have been bitten by the Aussie movie bug and are also interested in romance.

Ted's Evaluation -- 3 of 3: Worth watching.

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