The movie, as a whole, isn't nearly so original. Still, it's a pleasing, well-crafted, surprisingly satisfying diversion. It's eager to entertain and has a quality that's genuinely rare these days, a spirit of gentle modesty.
Roger EbertChicago Sun-Times
It's one of the movies with a lot of smiles and laughter in it, and a good feeling all the way through. Just everyday life, warmly observed.
Dave KehrChicago Tribune
The film's real subject is the unacknowledged intensity of the father-daughter bond and the difficulty of separation, though Shyer, true to his name, shies away from the more painful implications of the material. [20 Dec 1991, p.B]
Janet MaslinThe New York Times
The screenplay represents recycling at its best. The material has been successfully refurbished with new jokes and new attitudes, but the earlier film's most memorable moments have been preserved.
Mick LaSalleSan Francisco Chronicle
One of the nicest things about Father of the Bride is that it's not ashamed to be old-fashioned and sweet. It's also not ashamed to get sappy and drippy and gooey, but you have to take the good with the bad. [20 Dec 1991, p.C1]
Michael WilmingtonLos Angeles Times
The movie is like a big, smug, sunny ball of fluff, batting around in a crystalline cage. It's bright and well-meaning, but there's little to grab onto or feel. Not even the presence of those expert actor/farceurs, Steve Martin and Diane Keaton, give it any real presence or bite. [20 Dec 1991, p.16]
Martin is lots of friendly fun, proving once again that he is an actor with untapped range and style. Without him, the movie would deflate. [20 Dec 1991, p.54]
Christian Science Monitor
Steve Martin and Kimberly Williams do their best with a silly screenplay, and there are a few genuine laughs along the way. [20 Dec 1991]
William ArnoldSeattle Post-Intelligencer
As hard as it tries to capture that blend of domestic comedy and paternal angst that made its predecessor a classic, it is still a pale shadow and a barely passable Steve Martin vehicle. [20 Dec 1991, p.10]
Hal HinsonWashington Post
At first, Father of the Bride is so funny, it's almost sublime. The rest of the movie, alas, is regrets only.