Groundlings funny-girl and nervous plane passenger Annie Mumolo's first movie script, and the movie directorial debut of 25,000-Pyramid winner, Paul Feig--as well as Kristen Wiig's first movie script (not counting her SNL TV movie...)--and an almost all-female cast, make BRIDESMAIDS more virgin than slut. Scenes like Wiig's character having tedious sex with her f-buddy, and the engagement party speech-competition with Aussie-actor Rose Byrne, were like exaggerated SNL skits...too long for a paying audience. That's part of what I mean when I say trying to force the funny. But tender moments with Irish-hottie, Chris O'Dowd (and his collection of a 1,000 chocolate bar wrappers) bring heart to what was a confused comedy of newbie errors.
God bless Judd Apatow for looking for a female-driven comedy. The long-time producer and director deserves HIGH marks for putting faith in Wiig and Mumolo, and the primarily female cast. Gilmore Girls alum Melissa McCarthy is one of those cast members who truly delivered.
Playing the role of Megan, sister to Rudoph's fiance, Dougie--McCarthy practically stole the show with scream-with-laughter moments like her plane scene with Air Marshall Jon. Rudolph could barely hold herself in--she needed a more actively funny role--more parody, less pout. And Wiig was trying too hard to make something different, that was also funny, that was also female-oriented, that was also bawdy, that was also...too many alsos to count.
Wiig is a brilliant comedian--who doesn't love her terrific producer-character from Knocked Up? She does great dead-pan stuff. But her BRIDESMAIDS character, Annie, had too many problems that mimic real life. Do you know how many Americans lost businesses and jobs in the last two years? How many more lost their homes and families after losing their incomes? We know about hard-knocks...and it doesn't end with a good looking cop and a basket of puppies.
When Ferrell et al attempt their comedic film romps (I say "attempt" because not all are successful--and it has nothing to do with anyone's private parts, btw), the characters have "problems" that are simply absurd--like the owner of a small-town basketball team trying to make it big with his royalties as a love-me-sexy one-hit wonder, or a gym owner having to play dodgeball to protect his investment from the White Goodmans of the world, trading in their milkshakes for perfect, plastic bodies (and hair)--that the audience can actually escape from their real problems. Real problems like joblessness. Real problems like homelessness. By attempting to blend parody with reality, despite truly funny moments in the script and film, BRIDESMAIDS ultimately fails its audience.
The film deserves its positive reviews. It's a comedy, and people laughed at it. Successful, right? Right. But Wiig set out to make something truly unique--and that's no easy task to be sure--but while she succeeded in making people laugh, she failed miserably at recreating the parody. As I sat in the theatre, I kept looking at my watch thinking, "I should have spent the $8.50 on PRIEST." If I have to endure a sea of tired cliches, I at least want to see a little supernatural blood-shed, not a white-wedding bridal beauty shitting in the street. See? Forced.
On the Housel-scale, BRIDESMAIDS gets a generous 7.5/10. I wish I could give this movie a 10/10 because I want to support women writers, women comedians, female ensemble casts...just as badly as I want to see a good female superhero hit the silver screen. And yet, there's nothing but Elektra and Catwoman....