Movie Review – Bridesmaids

Plot: When her best friend Lillian (Maya Rudolph) gets engaged, Annie (Kristin Wiig) is chosen as maid of honor.  But when Lillian’s wealthy friend Helen (Rose Byrne) tries to become her new best friend and take control of the wedding, Annie’s life begins to spiral out of control.

Bridesmaids is okay.  There’s a good movie looming in here somewhere, but it’s plagued with so many little problems that it ultimately becomes an uneven mess.  While the first half offers you plenty of gross out dialogue and shock humor, the second half delves into drama.  While it doesn’t become a full on dramedy, the dramatic elements slowly start to outweigh the comedy, and on top of all that, it’s the worst kind of drama: boring and predictable.

The second half really goes through the motions as Annie’s life spirals out of control.  The movie is basically showing us a check-list of things that have to be ruined in order for her to finally get her shit together.  Annie is a bitter person.  Now this would normally be a problem as I don’t like to root for the sour protagonist, but Kristin Wiig gives such a good performance that I couldn’t help but have some affection for the character.  It’s not that I wasn’t rooting for her, but the drama is played out so predictably and generic, that it’s just like, ‘Yea, we know what’s going to happen at the end.  Just get on with it.’  There’s a scene where a teenage girl walks into the jewelry shop where Annie works, and before any dialogue is spoken, I knew exactly how the scene was going to play out.   It’s so run of the mill, and the jokes just aren’t nearly as strong as they were in the first half to keep it fresh.  Not only is the film lazy in how it wraps up the story, but the biggest problem is that it’s just way way way way way way way way way way way too long. 

Did I mention this movie is long?  Oh holy Moses, this needed to be edited down.  The movie’s predictability and cookie-cutter wrap up is made even worse by the fact that it’s soooooooo drawn out.  But it’s not just the story that feels endless.  The jokes go on much longer than necessary.

The prime example of this is when Annie and Helen are having dueling toasts at Lillian’s engagement party.  Both want to get in the last word.  It goes on FOREVER.  It just won’t end.  And it’s not that funny.  It’s mildly amusing at first, but it soon becomes awkward and unbearable.  There are countless scenes just like this.  Now this would be a much bigger issue if Kristin Wiig wasn’t so talented.  She’s able to make most of these overplayed jokes at the very least tolerable.  But the comedy would have been a lot more effective if it was edited down.

Kristin Wiig does really shine in this movie.  There’s a scene on an airplane where she’s especially hysterical.  Most of the acting is actually pretty damn good.  The only performance I didn’t like was Jon Hamm as Annie’s nothing but sex asshole friend Ted.  I get that he’s supposed to be a jerk, but it was a little much. 

The script is mediocre to bad, but the actresses elevate the material significantly.  All of the bridesmaids do the best they can with the jokes. 

Most of the jokes just don’t hit.  It’s the type of humor I hate in the majority of guy comedies: Unfunny sex puns, weird gross out dialogue, and shock humor.  For example, the obese character Megan (Melissa McCarthy) is there just to be weird.  Her jokes don’t even make sense most of the time.  Why the hell does she take nine dogs from the bridal shower party?  Huh?  Why is this funny?  It’s just weird to be weird. 

But my biggest complaint is that the producers are trying to trick you.  Bridesmaids is nothing more than a mediocre guy comedy, but because it’s with women, we are supposed to think it’s clever and original.  Oh hey, we have a run of the mill shit scene…but this time it’s with women.  Ohhhhhhhh, we are so clever.  That’s bull shit.  I know women want a great female comedy, but don’t settle for Bridesmaids.  You can do better.

All in all, I did get some solid chuckles and good performances.  I just wish the director (Paul Feig) put a little more effort into this.  It’s an excruciating run-time and a lot of cheap laughs.  Bridesmaids is okay, but there’s a better comedy lurking in this mess of a script.

Rating: 6 out of 10 (‘meh’)


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