Movie Review: Bridesmaids (A-)
I should, by all accounts, have a secret celebrity crush on Jessica Biel or Brooklyn Decker – you know, a blonde or brunette knockout with a drool-worthy body and the kind of smoldering face that magnetizes you in some kind of lustful tractor beam.
But guess what? I don’t. In fact, other than a slight infatuation with Olivia Wilde (but only in her Tron: Legacy get-up), my secret celebrity crush is Kristen Wiig. There. I said it and I don’t care who knows. Honesty is the best policy. Let the mocking begin.
At any rate, you’re thinking right now, Kristen Who? Sure, Kristen Wiig is certainly not a household name, but any fan of Saturday Night Live knows her face, humor and how talented she is, something she’s proven in her minor movie roles (Knocked Up, Ghost Town, Adventureland, Whip It!, MacGruber, Paul), and that she easily demonstrates again in Bridesmaids, her first big-time lead role. Wiig easily carries the movie, but she’s got help and the end result is a hilarious ensemble comedy with strong female performances and that Judd Apatow (he produces) brand of hilarity that meshes heart and in-your-face humor.
Bridesmaids tells the story of Annie (Wiig), a kindhearted and somewhat aimless thirtysomething woman who has let failed relationships and the collapse of her Milwaukee bakery business derail her life. She’s running in place and disillusioned, drowning her sorrows with booze and stints as an f-buddy of a serious douchebag (Jon Hamm), and she’s about to lose her job at a jewelry store clerk because she depresses all the potential ring-buyers. To make matters worse, Annie’s best friend Lillian (Maya Rudolph) is getting married and wants her to be the maid of honor, a seemingly easy proposition, except that Lillian has a clingy, wealthy new friend, Helen (Rose Byrne), who takes every opportunity to break up Annie and Lillian’s lifelong BFF status.
Bridesmaids is hilarious from start to finish, but the bulk of the comedy comes as Annie tries to be the perfect maid of honor and, as is her luck, nothing goes right. The bridesmaids, except for Helen, who won’t eat meat before a dress fitting, are all food poisoned (I laughed so hard during this scene I couldn’t breathe), and, after being drunk and drugged by Helen on their way to Las Vegas for a bachelorette party, Annie gets the whole crew booted off the plane. Lillian hands the planning duties over to Helen and, after a nuclear meltdown by Annie at Lillian’s bridal shower, asks Annie to stay away. Add to this Annie giving romance with a kindhearted police officer the middle finger, and her roommates – a portly and creepy British brother and sister pair – booting her from her apartment and regulating her to living with her mother (the late Jill Clayburgh), Annie has officially, in her words, hit rock bottom.
What I love about Bridesmaids is the women are unapologetic. They fart, swear, drink, talk about sex and are, frankly, real women. Sure comedy makes it a little grandiose, but the movie celebrates the “realness” of these women and that’s something I love. I can’t really find many faults with Bridesmaids, except that it did seem a tad bit long. And yes, we all know what’s coming at the end, but we’ve had so much fun getting to the finale, that its happy ending isn’t cheesy or lame, but well-deserved and certainly heartfelt.