Bridesmaids (2011) (R)
I don't know, I guess I expected something progressive...
I'm late to the game on this one, I'll admit it. "Bridesmaids'" popularity came and went a long time ago, but it still remains culturally relevant, considering that anything Paul Feig now touches is billed as "from the director of 'Bridesmaids'". So I went into it with the accolades in mind: two Academy Awards nominations, the praise of critics for finally making a raunchy girl movie, the equality we've been waiting for. Maybe that was a mistake, maybe having the thoughts of others pounding in my head was not the right way to watch this movie, because it was anything but all of those things.
"Bridesmaids" is a ghastly insight into how women are portrayed in the media. Not only does it not serve as a reminder that this is a male dominated industry; but it also just goes to prove that not ever good idea can be funny or inventive.
So take a group of women, or one woman in particular, who's down on her luck. Now, in any romantic comedy, she would be saved by a man in her situation. Finding true love will alleviate all her worries and stresses. Thank god that we've come so far as to place all those ridiculous behind...oh wait, nevermind.
Annie Walker (Kristen Wiig, also the co-writer), is a woman whose life seems to be going nowhere fast. She is the casual sex buddy of Ted (Jon Hamm), but that relationship is killing her, because—like all women—all she really wants is someone to talk to and be romantic with in every sense of the word. Annie used to own a cake and pastry shop, but that got closed down due to lack of business. Now she spends her time working at a jewelry shop, dolling out horrible advice to couples who want to get married. Unable to control her own personal problems because of her "female emotions", Annie just spills out on the verge of tears many times at her job. She is in a constant state of depression throughout the movie. Wow, that's funny and cheery. Let's laugh at a mid-life crisis. Um, no thank you.
Annie's best friend Lillian (Maya Rudolph) announces one day that she's going to get married. Oh, married? Ugh, this ruins everything. But wait, the drama isn't over yet. Lillian asks Annie to be her maid of honor and to make her dream wedding come true. That's a lot of responsibility for a woman who doesn't even have enough money to pay her rent; but Annie accepts gladly.
Lillian is marrying into some serious wealth and at a party for the soon to be newlyweds, Annie gets to meet the other bridesmaids. There's Rita (Wendi McLendon-Covey), Becca (Ellie Kemper), Megan (Melissa McCarthy), and Helen (Rose Byrne)—they make up future sister-in-laws, cousins, childhood friends, and the wives of business partners. Helen is the bitch among them, at least that's how Annie sees it. This perfectly beautiful woman who has her head full of air starts vying with Annie over the "best friend" label and instead of doing what any sane person would do in these moments, the female antagonism gets too much for Annie and she starts committing outbursts which are the movie's "funny moments".
Seriously though, what horrible person thought that watching a down-on-your luck loser who only wants a genuine relationship with her friends get beaten around verbally and physically eventually losing her cool and exploding in tantrums would be enjoyable to watch was seriously misguided. Ah, but there's the pooping in the sink scene. Really? That's how you justify this movie, with poop jokes?
I find "Bridesmaids" nothing short of repulsive in its implications and deadly dull in its humor.
The group of maids continue and Annie keeps falling into this cyclical nature of being a loser. She gets pulled over by a friendly cop, who eventually lets her go because of her cakes (there's no innuendo there).
But wait, let's examine the other pieces of the puzzle. Besides Megan who is the funniest part of the movie, purposely so, the maids are a group of bitchy women who only find solace in drinks and superficiality. One of them is a mother of three boys who tells the conservative one she should cheat on her husband a little.
In essence it boils down to women vs women. Helen vs Annie.
It's this simple concept that I just can't get into no matter what. Helen is so overtly evil and Annie is so depressingly sad. It's pathetic.
I just can't even describe what the movie does that makes it so incredibly awful. I find myself enraged at it.
If this is the new wave of "women's humor" count me out.
Posted by Micah Jones