Thursday, April 14, 2011

Review: Bridesmaids

I just went to a free-advanced screening of Bridesmaids! It was awesome! One of the benefits of going to a large, urban campus is that we fairly often get cool free previews of things. My freshman year I went to a free advanced screening of Role Models (hilarious) and last year I went to a one for She's Out of my League (waste of time). It doesn't come out until May 13, so na-na-na-na-na.

I was su-huper excited to see Bridesmaids; I do usually enjoy Judd Apatow movies and all the lead actresses are some of my faves. And honestly I was interested in seeing how the Judd Apatow formula would work with an all-female cast. I mean, this is the director/produced who basically invented the current bro-comedy that seems to rule the big screen these days, and those often leave women out of really funny roles. The first trailer I saw for it was not super promising, it had a lot of gross-out comedy in it and while sometimes I think that's really funny (the Tracey Morgan bathroom scene in Death at a Funeral had me dying of laughter), in general I think that stuff is done for cheap laughs. I'm a dialogue girl. Anyway, the second trailer was a lot more promising, and so four of my comedy-loving friends and I went to see what Bridesmaids had to offer.

Real quick plot: Annie (Kirsten Wiig)'s life really sucks. The plot summaries say this, but it's super true. Really nothing is going right for her and she lacks the self-confidence to do anything about it. And then her best friend, Lillian (Maya Rudolph), gets engaged! And all of a sudden Annie is in charge of maid of honor duties, and this veritable mix of bridesmaids, and cannot get anything done right. Anything. Which is all exacerbated by one of the other bridesmaids, Helen (Annie Byrne), who is rich and pretty and perfect and really obviously trying to steal Lillian's friendship from Annie.

Unlike other wedding-themed chick flicks (27 Dresses, You Again, Bride Wars), Bridesmaids avoids a lot of the clich├ęd traps that make those movies suck. (They do suck.) Whereas most chick flicks exaggerate the protagonist's features so much that they are basically unlikeable and un-relateable, Bridesmaids exaggerates the characters in a likeable, funny, and humanizing way. Some things are over the top... sure. It's Judd Apatow. That's what he does. And Kirstin Wiig might be crazy. But I love that crazy and I think she wears it well. While you really want to slap Annie in the face a few times for being dumb and wimpy and whiny, it's believable and I still felt like the types of conversations I was seeing on-screen were the sorts of weird conversations I have with my friends.

And it was a really fun atmosphere to watch the movie in too. I'd say the male-to-female ratio was like maybe 40-to-60, so fairly even for a movie with only a few male characters. And I think male audience members liked it just as much as the female ones did. Everyone was laughing and ooh-ing and clapping so it was really fun and really like... engaged the audience enough that we were all pretty much making noises and stuff that were like uncontrollable reactions to what was happening on screen. It was great, if y'all want a fun May movie, go see Bridesmaids next month.

And PS... the soundtrack is pretty great too.



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