June 28, 2011 4 Comments
Directed by Paul Feig. Starring Kristen Wiig, Terry Crews, Jessica St. Clair
After those terrible bridal ice–cold showers like “Bride War” or Runaway Bride or even “Father of the Bride 2” you might forgive me for going into the theatre with a sense of dread… expecting the worse: a chick-flick with bride in the title is usually a synonymous for shamefully bad film and basically a recipe for disaster!
Well, I am happy report that my fears were unfounded and that I was plainly wrong! This might be the exception that confirms the rule.
Yes, it is about the usual 30-something women going through a life-crisis and yes, it is about weddings, finding the right dress, being without a boyfriend and so on, but believe me it’s not half as empty or insulting as most of the movies out there (especially “Sex in the City 2”). In fact for the most part it avoids all the usual female stereotypes as it embraces situations which could easily be played by a male ensemble. But most crucially, it manages to be both rude and over the too and yet heartfelt and cute at the same time.
Some of the set pieces don’t always work as they should and some of the laughs are a bit of a hit-and-miss (the stuff with the room-mates, for example, is very flat and unfunny and ends up being completely redundant) and considering that the film is a touch too long, they should have probably made some trims here and there.
The moment everybody will be talking about is obviously the one involving some various bodily fluids, which is indeed quite funny and lavishly gross (as we’ve come to expect from a Judd Apatow production), however it is actually the smaller, low-key moments and even more dramatic episodes in the film that make it worthwhile: the tender scenes with the policemen, the shared unspoken history of friendship between the brides and bridesmaid, the relationship between mother and daughter, and of course the depiction of the handsome narcissist and incredibly creepy (and funny!) Jon Hamm (“I really want you to leave but I don’t know how to tell you”).
The director, Paul Weig has made his name working on TV shows like “Nurse Betty“, “The Office“, “Weeds” and even Arrested Development , all very good shows which interestingly seem to share the same mix of rude humor, touching drama, uncomfortable moments and great acting: a blend which he was able to translate onto the big screen.
The whole thing gets elevated by the very good ensemble cast led by Kristen Wiig who brings enough sensibility to make her character likable and strangely believable, despite the absurd situations. She can be both extremely funny and very touching at the same time in the same way Felicity Huffman from Desperate Housewives is (in fact she did remind me of her a lot). Hopefully we’ll see more of her in the future.
Bridesmaids is certainly not groundbreaking, nor is a game-changer in comedy movie history, but at least it gives back some credibility and integrity to this type of films and in this never-ending season of too-many-sequels, tired franchise and un-funny sterile and unoriginal comedies (Hangover 2 just to mention the most recent one), it is quite refreshing to find one that not only makes you laugh but at the same time it makes you care for the characters on the screen (I don’t think I am asking for too much, am I?!).
And talking about bad comedies: check out my review of THE DILEMMA