I finally got around to seeing Bridesmaids last night, the one film I’ve been looking forward to all summer. Not because I love chick-flicks or rom-coms, noooo – I can’t bear either genre. Not because I wanted to see the bride’s dress or know which designer made the bridesmaids outfits, nah – I’m not that way inclined. I wanted to see Bridesmaids because it had been touted as a game changer, as a true comedy about real women.
I don’t agree that Bridesmaids is a female The Hangover. It stands alone as a success and I don’t think it needs that validation. In fact, I think it’s a far better film. There are of course similarities in the construct of the films; a group of friends organise a stag/hen for a friend who is about to marry and cue comedic disasters which threaten to jeopardise the wedding. Oh, and there’s a fat friend that wears a satchel. But for me it more or less ends there.
You should be aware that The Hangover instantly became my favourite film of all time, I’ve watched it more than twenty or thirty times. I rarely watch films again, even ones I love.
Men should definitely go and see Bridesmaids, it’s not just for girls. Now that I’ve seen it with my girlfriend I wouldn’t mind going to see it again with a group of male friends. Men who haven’t yet seen it should definitely take their girlfriends or female friends, and if you really want to make a good impression take a lady to see it as part of a date. Only please make sure you’ve already had a couple of dates before (the cinema is so not a good choice for a first date, dude).
The writing in Bridesmaids (Kristen Wiig and Annie Mumolo) is so precise, so wonderfully exact and honest that there were several moments where I found myself cringing in a way I didn’t with The Hangover. Maybe it was because many of the gags in The Hangover had been committed to film thousands of times before and yet we had rarely seen women deliver them. There’s something about seeing a woman shit herself in a wedding dress in the middle of a busy street, or in a bathroom sink, that shouldn’t be funny at all, but I don’t think I’ll ever laugh like that again.
They’re calling Bridesmaids a gross-out chick-flick, a title I don’t like. I don’t think it’s a new thing that women like this type of film, after all The Hangover had a 48 percent female audience in the US and The Hangover II also enjoyed a huge 51 percent female attendance there. From my anecdotal evidence women have been crying out for a film like Bridesmaids for a very long time, only now it seems Hollywood is finally listening. In an MSN Movies article, Donna Gigliotta, production president for the Weinstein Company said,
[Bridesmaids shows] that there is an audience out there – there are women who enjoy seeing women’s stories that have truth to them.
And plenty of that there is. Bridesmaids is laugh-out-loud funny all the way through, the characters are real to the point I became upset when the main character became upset while watching a seen from Castaway. OK, I was only a teensy bit upset, but still. There are touching, thought-provoking scenes and there are beautifully shot sequences you’ll talk about again and again.
If, from the posters, you were expecting another Sex And The City type trough of mutton-dressed-as-lamb, or maybe you were thinking it’s another Jennifer Aniston girl-meets-boy-then-loses-boy-only-to-go-on-journey-of-self-emancipation-and-eventually-win-back-boy…. nah, this ain’t it.
This is a properly, thoroughly good film which will entertain everybody and probably instantly make its way into your top 3 favourite films. Go and see it.