In the 2000s, there was no bigger brand in comedy than what was being delivered by the Frat Pack (Ben Stiller, Owen Wilson, Luke Wilson, Will Ferrell, Steve Carell, Jack Black, and Vince Vaughn), and Wedding Crashers is one of the greatest examples of that era. Years after its release, it remains as funny as ever – due both to a terrific script and amazing performances – and we’ve put together this feature celebrating the special lines that are funny no matter how many times you watch the movie.
“You shut your mouth when you’re talking to me!”
There are times when one can get so angry that their capacity to put together cogent thoughts completely fails. This line, as delivered by the great Rebecca De Mornay, is a perfect example of this, and it is the first big laugh in Wedding Crashers.
“We lost a lot of good men out there.” “Playing for the Yankees?”
It’s hinted at in the first act of Wedding Crashers that John Beckwith (Owen Wilson) isn’t as into the titular activity as he once was. Not only does this weird slip-up add evidence of these feelings, but it’s also a great mid-montage joke that John successfully rebounds from with aplomb.
“He lived with mother until he was 40! She tried to poison his oatmeal!”
It’s set up early on that Chazz Reinhold is a chaotic individual (a reputation to which he eventually lives up), as John’s declarative statement about him really tells you everything that you need to know about the man and how he lives.
“I happen to know everything there is to know about maple syrup. I love maple syrup. I love maple syrup on pancakes; I love it on pizza. I love to take a little bit and put it in my hair when I’ve had a rough week. What do you think holds it up, slick?”
The early exchange between John and Jeremy about their cover story – the latter pitching that they be the owners of a maple syrup conglomerate – is wonderfully illustrative of the brilliant chemistry between Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson. The former’s razzle-dazzle about his syrup expertise is ridiculous, and it gets an equally silly response.
“Grow up, Peter Pan! Count Chocula!”
Why does John call Jeremy “Count Chocula” at the end of his burn regarding outlandish ideas for a cover story? There is no real answer, but it doesn’t matter, because that line gets a chuckle with every viewing of Wedding Crashers.
“Whatever! Make me a bicycle, clown!”
Jeremy has a big personality, and one gets the sense that it’s hard to put him back on his heels… but that’s exactly what happens when he tries his balloon-twisting gambit and runs into an intense young boy.
“I always knew my first time would be on a beach!”
With those 11 words from Gloria Cleary, Jeremy Grey’s wedding crashing adventure becomes an absolute nightmare, and Isla Fisher’s delivery initiates a cackle every time. If Jeremy’s story is a roller coaster in Wedding Crashers, that’s equivalent to the first big drop.
“I don’t think you’re appreciating the urgency here. Not only is she a virgin, she’s totally off the reservation! I’m terrified of this broad”
The intense fear that Vince Vaughn gets across in his urgency to hit the ejector seat from the Cleary wedding is gold that would properly fit in a horror movie.
“Oh please. You and I both know I’m a phenomenal dancer. Now I know you’re lying through your teeth. You’ll do anything to get me to go on this thing. Even if I have to walk into the lion’s den.”
Jeremy might be petrified of the possibility he might be trapped for a weekend with Gloria Cleary, but he is a man of integrity who will clearly never tolerate someone besmirching his talent for dancing.
“She took me below deck for forty-five minutes. I have no bodily fluids left in me.”
At the start of Wedding Crashers, time has slowly siphoned all of the fun of crashing weddings from John Beckwith, but in Jeremy’s case, it’s quickly drained from him.
“I’m not even going to say it, but you know I’m upset.”
If I had to wear those golf pants, I would be upset too.
“That’s what we call a sack lunch! Nomnomnomnomnom.”
Sack Lodge and his cronies are a bunch of jerks who inspire more teeth-grinding in Wedding Crashers than laughs, but Carson Elrod’s delivery as Flip following Jeremy being tackled in the football game is indisputably hilarious.
“Yeah! Crabcakes and Football. That's what Maryland does!”
I really have to give it up to Flip. The guy knows how to properly celebrate overkill aggression during a backyard game of touch football.
“If I had any air in my lungs, I’d scream at you.”
Poor, Jeremy. He just wanted to have some fun, and instead, he finds himself hooking up with a lunatic and regularly getting pummeled to the ground all in the name of being a good wingman. He’s a trooper.
“Gloria, please. I'm exhausted. I've had a very long day... my leg's cut and bleeding. I'm really not in the mood for this.”
Is Jeremy a cad who lies to women? Yes. Is some of what he experiences during his weekend with the Clearys an example of karmic, deserved retribution? Certainly. But boy, does Vince Vaughn sell pained exhaustion well for laughs.
“Don’t ever leave me. Because I’d find you!”
It’s clear that something is wrong with Gloria from the outset – with behavior like holding her breath and stamping when she doesn’t get her way with her father – but this is the line where she goes from being a weirdo to a terror.
When you think about it, Gloria Cleary is very obviously the daughter of Kathleen Cleary (Jane Seymour) – as evidenced by the bizarre, seductive cat-and-mouse game that she plays with John throughout their weekend together.
“Hey, what were they like anyway? They looked pretty good, are they real? Are they built for speed or comfort? What'd you do with them? Motorboat? You play the motorboat?”
A big part of what sells this line is Jeremy’s mood change. At the start of their conversation, he is wholly drained and seemingly ready to collapse, but the simple mention of Kathleen coming on to John brings him back to life.
“I’m a little too traumatized to have a scone.”
This line is extra funny when you consider the heaping plateful of food he puts together after arriving in the kitchen the morning after the roughest night of his life. He can eat (especially if it’s all covered in his favorite condiment: maple syrup), but scones are just too much after his traumatic experience with Gloria and her family.
“I'm gonna go see Dr. Finklestein and I'm gonna tell him we have a whole new bag of issues. We can forget about mom for a while.”
It’s nice to know that Jeremy recognizes the importance of good mental health. The guy clearly has a lot of issues before we meet him in the story, but one can especially understand why he would need to talk to a professional following his weekend with the Clearys.
“I mean like, hunt a human being right now, ‘Most Dangerous Game.’ Like a worthy adversary. Not a human being that's armed, but a clever, clever, human being who knows the jungle. Or the woods.”
I’m not going to lie: if this line were to be used as a jumping off point to create a ridiculous 20-years-later sequel to Wedding Crashers, you would not hear a single complaint coming from me. In fact, I downright hope it happens.
“I hope you flip your bike over and knock your two front teeth out! You leave me in the trenches taking grenades, John!”
There’s an argument to be made that John doesn’t ultimately show nearly enough respect for Jeremy in Wedding Crashers… but Jeremy sure does whine a lot (though the talent of Vince Vaughn makes it hilarious).
“Maybe there's something about me that I'm a little cuckoo. I know it's a surprise, I know it's not on the surface. I mean, I had an imaginary friend when I was kid, and his name was Shiloh! We used to play checkers with each other every day, and bless his heart, Shiloh would always let me win!”
Another line that could be the platform for a Wedding Crashers follow-up. Jeremy Grey is a fascinating individual, and the brief insights we get into his wild mind are amazing. I’d watch This Is 40-esque sequel that centers on Jeremy and Gloria’s relationship that is structured with flashback sequences that show their origins – including Jeremy’s bond with Shiloh.
“The painting was a gift, Todd. I'm taking it with me.”
If I were Jeremy, I perhaps wouldn’t want to keep a souvenir from one of the weirdest, most traumatic nights of my life, but it’s very clear that he is wired differently.
“She hasn't returned your phone calls, she hasn't responded to any of your letters, she didn't respond to the candygram. God knows what happened to the kitten you got for her. 'Cause she didn't keep it, and I know you're not raising the thing. I think it's very obvious at this juncture that she just flat out does not wanna see you.”
Vince Vaughn’s rapid fire delivery is best utilized when he can get on a run, and this bit from Jeremy as he tries to get John over his crush on Claire is the actor at the peak of his game.
“Listen, I’m getting married.” “Get out.”
A lot of credit goes to director David Dobkin and editor Mark Livolsi with this one. John’s instantaneous response to Jeremy’s “good” news is top-notch comedic timing aided by smart comedic minds working on the film in post-production.
“I almost nunchucked you. You don’t even realize.”
Will Ferrell was a cameo king in the 2000s, and Wedding Crashers is among his best surprise appearances. His serious arrival out of the shadows is excellent, but then he provides a tension breaker that is somehow both a relief and a red flag.
“Ma! The meatloaf!”
I have to imagine that this is a line that is quoted around the world whenever meatloaf is served. It might be the most quotable Wedding Crashers quote.
“I'm sorry I called you white trash.” “Apology accepted.” “And I'm sorry I called you hillbilly. I don't even know what that means.”
This is not only a funny exchange because of the Owen Wilson/Vince Vaughn banter, but because it’s (unbeknownst to John and Jeremy) a callback to the verbal tussle between Rebecca De Mornay and Dwight Yoakam’s characters in the film’s opening scene.
“I crashed a funeral earlier. It wasn’t my idea, I was basically dragged to it. I went with Chazz who you forgot to tell me is totally insane. He also might be a genius because it actually does work, he's cleaning up.”
The shock that this admission sends through the audience is fully earned. It’s a wildly horrible thing to do, and though it’s funny to witness as a viewer, it’s questionable that Claire instantly forgives him for the atrocious behavior.
“Share that with the Dalai Lama.”
Funny as it may be to see Jeremy get violently tackled in the game of touch football in Wedding Crashers, it is also immensely satisfying to not only see him get his revenge, but to deliver a sharp line to pair with his hit.
“So damn beautiful. With every death there comes rebirth. It’s the circle of life. We’re gonna be alright.”
Using a wedding to further heighten the emotions of a woman picked up while in mourning at a funeral? Chazz might be a moralless sociopath, but there is no arguing that the man is an artist at his horrible, horrible craft.
Wedding Crashers is available for purchase on Blu-ray and DVD, and it is available for rental and purchase on a wide variety of digital platforms.