Movie Name: Bridesmaids
Studio: Relativity Media
Release Date(s): May 13, 2011
MPAA Rating: R
Annie Walker (Kristen Wiig) feels she’s hit rock bottom. Her cake business has folded, she hates her roommates (Rebel Wilson and Matt Lucas), and her “boyfriend” (Jon Hamm) only invites her over for sex. When her best friend Lillian Donovan (Maya Rudolph) reveals she’s getting married, Annie is named the Maid of Honor…unfortunately, Annie has farther to fall. Annie’s duties are being trumped by Lillian’s new best friend Helen Harris III (Rose Byrne). With an unlimited budget, Helen is out to make Lillian the best wedding ever despite the growing rivalry with Annie. Time is ticking, and Annie might have to sort out her own life before Lillian walks down the aisle.
Directed by Paul Feig, Bridesmaids was gross-out R-Rated romantic comedy. The movie was well received and a big box office hit. The movie received two Oscar nominations for Best Supporting Actress (Melissa McCarthy) and Best Original Screenplay.
When Bridesmaids came out, it was already fighting an uphill battle. In 2009, a movie about a group of groomsmen having a crazy time in Vegas complete with a weird-o weight challenged brother-in-law was released…The Hangover. Bridesmaids was immediately compared to it. Some of this comparison is legitimate, but other comparisons are not quite fair.
The story of Bridesmaids is where the movie soars and falls. The movie is pretty much can be divided between Annie’s story and her failing life and her battle with Helen over her best friend’s wedding. The movie goes on a bit too long and some of this could have been pared down for time.
The movie also goes a long way to make Annie such a sad sack and Helen a total evil woman. Annie is just pathetic…It goes past being funny at points. She seems like a half-way intelligent woman and people do make bad choices, but I don’t see her sticking with her sex-buddy over the nice guy cop Nathan Rhodes (Chris O’Dowd). Helen is also really transparent and Lillian’s character is too smart to see through her act…plus, the other bridesmaids probably should have stuck up for Annie at points and don’t for no reason.
What is strong about the story is the basic idea that sometimes, you outgrow your friends though you’ll always be friends. The film reminds me a bit more of Stand by Me in that aspect rather than The Hangover. It is this part of the film that I think is strong…plus, any movie that ends with the cast singing to a ’90s song can’t go wrong.
The cast of the movie is awesome but underused in some places. Wiig despite her sad-sack nature is fun and expressive with acting and Maya Rudolph is much more downplayed than normal which is a pleasant change. Rose Byrne brings her beauty to the role as the perfect Helen though I wish she had her accent which would have made her more of a prim and proper friend for Rudolph. Melissa McCarthy is good, but I do find her character a bit close to Alan of The Hangover (which she ironically appeared with in The Hangover III). Wasted in the film are the disappearing bridesmaids of Ellie Kemper and Wendi McLendon-Covey whose small storylines go nowhere. Chris O’Dowd is charming as the love interest for Kristen Wiig, but also wasted and a bit miscast is Jon Hamm as the her sex-buddy…I also could watch a whole series about comedians Matt Lucas and Rebel Wilson living together (which they do in real life).
Bridesmaids is a fun movie, but I think it is a bit overly acclaimed. I enjoy the film and there are a lot of laughs, but there also a number of faults with the film. It could be overly critical, and I do enjoy the movie more than a lot of Judd Apatow films (he did produce this). It is interesting to see a “chick-flick” do the humor that is usually reserved to male cast films. If you are a fan of The Hangover, don’t worry, this doesn’t copy it…but it is a very similar vein.