BRIDESMAIDS is so funny, so refreshing, so groundbreaking, I want to jump up on a table and warble like a coloratura. It absolutely takes us where we’ve never been before– on an outrageously funny romp through the pre-nuptial rituals of a wedding, from the maid of honor’s point of view. It’s been called the female version of THE HANGOVER. I loved that movie.This is equally hilarious. And the good news is, it’s not women doing “man” jokes — it’s women in comic situations that mine women’s relationships for explosive laughs– and this movie kills. The women have “empathy” wars: who is the nicest, the most thoughtful, who is closest to The Bride. (There is one wildly funny scene in a pristine, upscale bridal salon that will leave you howling. Producer Judd Apatow was apparentlybehind it—and it comes close to crossing the gender divide—but it absolutely works here.)
BRIDESMAIDS assembles a gaggle of disparate maids–some friends of the bride Lillian (Maya Rudolph), and some newcomers who spice up the mix– like the groom’s boss’s too beautiful, too perfect trophy wife (Rose Byrne), and her polar opposite the groom’s coarse, overweight and hysterically blunt sister (Melissa McCarthy-Jenny’s cousin!). At the heart of it all is the bride’s best friend and maid of honor Annie Walker (Kristen Wiig). Wiig (who co-wrote the screenplay)and Rudolph have palpable comedy chemistry that made me want to pajama party with them. They also create believable and endearing characters whom we immediately understand.
Like any good comedy that’s based in reality, this one has universal appeal; my husband of 32 years and I laughed equally loud and hard at each handily crafted comic gem of a scene. We were totally in sync with the hapless Annie as she stumbled through the wreckage of her screwy life– the failed cake business, the nutty British roommates, the stinkers she sleeps with. You gotta love a comedy about women that makes short work of the gorgeous Jon Hamm– and he still looked happy to be there.
One sweet-sad note– this was the late Jill Clayburgh’s last movie, made while she was dying of leukemia. She plays Annie’s bawdy and resilient mother. Clayburgh appears older but herself in some scenes, withered and barely recognizable in others, but absolutely funny and uniquely charming in all of them. No matter the lack of continuity in her physical appearance; the filmmakers clearly felt that if Ms. Clayburgh was game enough to play these scenes, they would show them. I embrace her and this film for that act of grace.
DON’T MISS BRIDESMAIDS! YOU’LL LAUGH YOURSELF SILLY! I’m going to see it again.