Bridesmaids

PLOT (spoiler alert!!!):

Annie (Kristen Wiig) is a single woman in her mid 30s, living in Milwaukee. After her dream bakery, Cake Baby, failed, she lost her boyfriend and all of her savings, and now works in a jewelry store and is in a sexual relationship with the self-absorbed and uncommitted Ted (Jon Hamm). Her friendship with her childhood best friend Lillian (Maya Rudolph) is her only source of happiness.

When Lillian becomes engaged to her boyfriend, Doug (Tim Heidecker), she asks Annie to be her maid of honor. Annie agrees, but is secretly concerned about how things will change. At the engagement party, Annie meets her fellow bridesmaids: Lillian’s cynical cousin Rita (Wendi McLendon-Covey), idealistic friend Becca (Ellie Kemper), raunchy future sister-in-law Megan (Melissa McCarthy) and Helen (Rose Byrne), the “perfect” wife of Doug’s boss. Helen and Annie are immediately jealous of one another’s friendship with Lillian. Driving home, Annie is pulled over by Officer Nathan Rhodes (Chris O’Dowd) for having broken taillights. The two flirt, and he lets her off with a warning after discovering that she was the owner of Cake Baby, which he always enjoyed.

Annie’s attempts to serve as the maid of honor go abysmally after she takes them to a seedy Brazilian restaurant that gives everyone violent food poisoning. Meanwhile, Helen, with her wealth and connections, constantly upstages Annie: rejecting Annie’s idea of Parisian bridal shower, getting them access to a chic bridal-gown studio after Annie failed to make a reservation, and ordering expensive designer bridesmaids gowns for the group that are beyond Annie’s means. Worried about her limited finances, Annie suggests a bachelorette party at Lillian’s parents’ lake house. Helen overrules her and books a trip to Las Vegas. Annie refuses to allow Helen to buy a first-class ticket for her and sits in economy class. Because Annie is afraid of flying, Helen gives her sedatives and alcohol, causing Annie to become inebriated and paranoid, and her outbursts forces the plane to land in Casper, Wyoming, where the wedding party is escorted off the plane by police, canceling the Las Vegas bachelorette party. On the bus trip back to Milwaukee, Annie tries to apologize but Lillian quietly states that she wants Helen to take over planning the shower and wedding.

Distraught, Annie contacts Nathan and the two hang out while she discusses her difficulties. Nathan is sympathetic and encourages her to open a new bakery, but Annie refuses; her business’ failure was so painful that she has given up baking entirely. After spending the night together, Nathan buys baking supplies, hoping to reignite her dream. This makes her uncomfortable and she abruptly leaves, breaking things off with him despite liking him. She is then fired from her job for lashing out at one of her customers and evicted from her apartment. With nowhere else to go, and her friendship with Lillian strained, she moves back in with her mother (Jill Clayburgh).

Attending the bridal shower, Annie discovers that Helen has created an elaborate version of Annie’s Parisian theme, later upstaging Annie’s heartfelt, handmade gift by giving Lillian a trip to Paris to be fitted for her wedding gown by one of the world’s top designers. Annie snaps and throws a tantrum, destroying the decorations and food. Lillian kicks her out of the shower and disinvites her from the wedding. On the way home, Annie’s unfixed taillights cause a crash and she is stranded. Nathan answers the emergency call, exasperated that she still has not fixed her taillights, and tells Annie how much she hurt him and not to contact him again. Annie calls Ted for a ride, but when he expects sexual favors for the drive, she dumps him and walks home.

Annie becomes reclusive, doing nothing but watch TV. Megan finds her and tells her to stop feeling sorry for herself. Annie realizes her errors and decides to make amends with Nathan, getting her taillights fixed and baking him a cake, but he appears to rebuff the gesture, leaving the cake outside his house. On the day of the wedding, Helen appears on her doorstep, begging for help in finding Lillian who has gone missing. In the car, Helen tearfully apologizes for all she has done to hurt Annie and explains how lonely she is: her husband is uncaring and she has no friends, suspecting that she is only invited to weddings for her party planning skills and connections.

Annie contacts Nathan, who begrudgingly helps them find Lillian hiding at her own apartment. Lillian is overwhelmed by Helen’s micromanaging and fears how marriage will change her life, including leaving Annie alone. Annie reassures her, and herself, that everything will be fine and helps Lillian get ready for the wedding as her maid of honor once more. After Lillian and Doug leave for their honeymoon, Annie reconciles with Helen, touching her with a gesture of friendship. Helen then quietly reveals that she has arranged for Nathan to pick Annie up, after seeing that they were in love. Nathan reveals that he ate the cake Annie made for him. After sharing a kiss, he takes her home in his squad car.

REVIEW:

Every summer, there is that one film, usually a chick flick, that surprises every one with how well received it is and how well it does at the box office. This year, that film was Bridesmaids.

I’ve heard people say that this is the female equivalent of The Hangover. I can see the comparison, and I’m sure the female readers will side with this one since they can relate a bit more. For me, though, give me the random misadventures of a bachelor party gone awry.

The plot of this films is basically the misadventures of a woman in her mid 30s feeling the pressure of the economic downturn and watching all her friends get married, while she is on the verge of having to move back in with her mother.

I’ve heard horror stories about brides, or should I say bridezillas, and the desire to make sure their bridesmaids look horrible. I was half expecting this to go that road, but instead it ended up being more of a middle age coming of age comedy, complete with “potty” humor. The dress thing was best left to 27 Dresses, I suppose.

The gross-out humor here, though, is what brings people to this film. Someone said that the fact there haven’t been an R-rated comedies of this nature featuring women, is because many men think of them as too delicate to do such things. I’m inclined to agree and believe that the shock value of some like say, Melissa McCarthy climbing onto a sink and taking a dump is hilarious.

Maybe it was just me, but I really could care less about Kristen Wiig’s character and her life drama. I’m not sure if it was because the other characters were all so much more interesting, or if it was because I’m over her, but she just seemed a bit whiny for most of the film. Hell, even when she was stranded in the middle of nowhere, I felt nothing. Who knows?

Bridesmaids is actually pretty enjoyable. I think it is more of a chick flick, rather than just a comedy featuring women, though. Blame that little romance with the cop on that, though. Should you check this out? Well, I would say yes, but I’m sure there are moments that will turn both men and women off, so it depends on how squeamish you are when it comes to potty humor and how bored you get with the romantic comedy stuff. That being said, this film did not forget it was a comedy, and that is what I really like about it.

4 out of 5 stars

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4 Responses to “Bridesmaids”

  1. […] week, or the week before, I reviewed this summer’s hit Bridesmaids. Not one to leave my fellow men out, I pulled out this urban comedy from 1999, The Best Man. […]

  2. […] this summer, we had a bridal shower gone bad in Bridesmaids and a bachelor party turned into a sting operation/kidnap and rescue mission in The Hangover part […]

  3. […] is how we got Bachelorette. Some have called this a mixture between The Hangover, Mean Girls, and Bridesmaids. From what I recall, I would say this fits more in line with the […]

  4. […] no, it doesn’t get a recommendation from me. If you want to see McCarthy do her thing, watch Bridesmaids, Mike & Molly, hell, you can even go back and watch her in a more dramatic role on The Gilmore […]

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