The arrival of a former lover throws the feelings of a bride-to-be into turmoil on her wedding day in this English comedy drama set in the '30s. Now playing nationwide.
Downton Abbey’s Elizabeth McGovern straps on the matriarch’s hat here for a role that’s not a million miles away from her TV series, though Cheerful Weather for the Wedding itself is a slightly different beast - if by a matter of degrees rather than drastic amounts. The era is a little later, the country manor she presides over a little smaller, and its atmosphere less stuffily elitist with the film relying less on stiff upper lip drama than a mix of pining, familial farce and sweet summer love story.
An unlikely bride given her age, McGovern’s Mrs Thatcham isn’t the central character here - somewhat lucky given the American actress tries on her best posh English accent in a performance defined by her precise over-enunciation. Instead Cheerful Weather enlists Cemetery Junction’s Felicity Jones for its nervous pre-nuptials, a role which largely sees her confined to her room swigging rum while we’re entertained by family squabbling and the awkward presence of her former flame (Luke Treadaway).
Were the film to be solely about the wedding countdown and a little less wry in its humour Cheerful Weather could have ended up in Death at a Funeral territory, but by intercutting its winter pre-marital tension with summery flashbacks of youthful flirtations it offers more than that weak farce. Jones’ crush-worthiness for one thing - essential to Treadaway’s motivation in attending her wedding (otherwise, why would you?) – and allowing the film to offer a little sweet and sour within its romantic drama formula.