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Best Men
DVD cover
Directed byTamra Davis
Written byArt Edler Brown
Tracy Fraim
Produced byBrad Krevoy
Steve Stabler
Brad Jenkel
Deborah Ridpath
StarringDean Cain
Andy Dick
Luke Wilson
Sean Patrick Flanery
Mitchell Whitfield
Drew Barrymore
Fred Ward
Raymond J. Barry
Brad Dourif
Tracy Fraim
Biff Yeager
Art Edler Brown
K. K. Dodds
CinematographyJames Glennon
Edited byPaul Trejo
Music byMark Mothersbaugh
Distributed byOrion Pictures
Release date
  • October 17, 1997 (1997-10-17)
Running time
90 minutes
CountryUnited States
Budget$4 million
Box office$5,000 (domestic)

Best Men is a 1997 American crime comedy film directed by Tamra Davis, and stars Sean Patrick Flanery, Luke Wilson, Andy Dick, Mitchell Whitfield, Fred Ward, Drew Barrymore and Dean Cain.


The film opens with 4 groomsmen preparing for a wedding and dressing in tuxedos. Buzz (Dean Cain), a former soldier, is shown holstering handguns in his tuxedo, Teddy (Andy Dick), a browbeaten house husband, is meticulously getting ready, Sol (Mitchell Whitfield), a former criminal lawyer now specializing in divorce, dresses neatly while Billy (Sean Patrick Flannery), a failing actor, is shown watching a newscast. The reporter goes into detail about a recent bank robbery where the robber recited Shakespearean prose before escaping. All four of the guys then meet up and walk towards a prison where it is shown that Jesse (Luke Wilson) is being released after spending 3 years for an unspecified crime. During a heated argument between Sol and Jesse it is hinted that Sol was Jesse's attorney and made an error that led to Jesse's incarceration.

Jesse is the groom and upon his release has planned to meet his fiance Hope (Drew Barrymore) and marry her surrounded by his best friends. While en route to the wedding ceremony Billy asks for the guys to pull over near a bank. Billy enters the bank wearing a balaclava and commences to rob it (showing that he is the Shakespeare robber from the earlier newscast). As he finishes, he gives a rendition of Shakespeare just as Buzz walks in trying to get Billy to hurry up. Buzz stops the robbery but unveils Billy to everyone as the robber. The other guys then walk into the bank and inadvertently create a hostage situation. The police are called and the guys are faced with the consequences of Billy's actions. Sol tells them they are all accomplices and facing serious prison time.

However, the bank customers bond with the 5 unlikely robbers. Outside the bank Billy's dad, Sheriff Philips (Fred Ward), demands for Billy to surrender and mocks him for being a failure in life. Billy confronts his father and refuses to surrender. Inside the bank it's suggested that Billy release some of the hostages and Mayor Boar (Bill Yeager) volunteers but is mocked for being cowardly. One of the hostages, Gonzo (Brad Dourif) comes forward and offers the guys a solution to their problem. He suggests they request a chopper land on the roof and he will fly them to safety. Buzz seems to bond with Gonzo who is a Vietnam veteran, Buzz tells Gonzo that his whole dream in life was to serve in the military but due to being gay he was not allowed to serve. Gonzo seeing his pain, gifts Buzz his military jacket. Outside the FBI arrive to take over the hostage negotiation.

The lead agent Hoover (Raymond J. Barry) shows little regard for the hostages and plans to execute the five dimwitted robbers as soon as they exit the bank. Sheriff Philips approaches the bank and Billy finally confronts his father for being a lousy parent. The sheriff is shown to realise he was never there for his son. Billy agrees to allow some of the hostages to go, Gonzo amongst them. All of the freed hostages refuse to identify Billy or his friends. The gang negotiates for Jesse and Hope to be married in the bank and Hoover agrees for a priest to go in and perform the ceremony. During the wedding, the priest is uncovered to be a federal agent and Teddy and Buzz are shot during a struggle. Teddy, feeling like the bank robbery has woken him up, refuses to be sent to hospital for urgent care but eventually acquiesces. Buzz patches his wound and the guys plot their exit from the bank.

Sol goes outside and negotiates a deal with Hoover to get everyone out. As Sol re-enters the bank, Hoover informs his men that the guys will never escape and that as soon as they exit he will have his snipers gun them down. Sol and the guys with the remaining hostages exit the bank draped in a giant American flag. The snipers unable to pick out the guys refuse Hoovers orders to shoot indiscriminately (they also refuse to shoot at the flag). As everyone enters the bus, Sol tells Jesse he's sorry and Hope forgives him. He then steps off the bus as he announces the deal he brokered involved him surrendering to save Jesse and the guys. Hoover, however, reneges on the deal and Sol holds him at gunpoint so the police cars let the bus go. As the bus leaves, Sol is shot by the snipers multiple times and dies. Sheriff Philips then blocks the feds with his police cruiser, giving Billy time to make a getaway.

As the bus makes for the local airport the feds start to catch up, and Buzz drives the bus off the main road. Gonzo then appears in a military helicopter and Jesse and Hope escape onto the chopper. However, Billy and Buzz are unable to escape and remain behind. They get surrounded by the feds, and in a final bloody shoot out, the two best friends die but not before Buzz gets off a shot killing Hoover.

The film ends with Jesse and Hope playing with a son some years later on a beach in Mexico.



On review aggregation website Rotten Tomatoes, the film holds an approval rating of 40% based on 4,371 reviews, scoring a 13% on the Tomatometer.