If there is anything to take from Bridesmaids, it is that being the Maid of Honor sucks (which I hope my best friend will remember when I am most likely crying my eyes out over all I have to do for her when the day comes). More importantly, and more relavent, it’s the relief that the look for the best comedy of the year can stop right now. Basically it’s going to take pure perfection topped with bribery of free puppies, slushie machines, and Ryan Reynolds to beat this one.
To sum it up, the film structures itself around the well-worn path to the alter, taking a machete along to carve out its own path away from the formula best known for the sappiness of the romantic comedy versions of these stories. To clarify, this is not a romantic comedy, though both of those words apply to the film. More comparable to The Hangover and Due Date in comedy and ridiculous events transgressing within simple journeys (though I will purposely refrain from unfairly labeling it is a female version of The Hangover), Bridesmaids draws its humor from the relationships of the characters as they find themselves in a constant spiral of unraveling events that hopefully have never actually happened to one group of people in short succession. Hilarious to witness; no doubt unfathomably painful to experience.
Co-written by Kristen Wiig (and possibly because of), Bridesmaids finally gives her the opportunity to play a role that doesn’t earn her name a lower spot on the film’s imdb.com page. As an actress who easily steals every scene she is a part of (only possibly outdone by the ridiculously underappreciated Kristen Schaal), Wiig does not waste any moments in front of the camera. Every once in a while the style in which she presents herself comedically that has led her to star in practically every SNL skit week after week is let loose, but for the most part those who prefer something a little more restrained will be happy to know that she does not seem like a character here. Instead she gives a very authentic performance during the comedic and serious bits that manage to smoothly sneak in equally.
Okay so clearly Wiig is one of my favorite comedic actresses, but as much as I rave about her she doesn’t come close to stealing the film because of the great cast surrounding her. Not one of the main actresses feels like a weak spot in the film, and in all honesty my only complaint coming out of the theater was that I wished we got to see even more of Wendi McLendon-Covey and Ellie Kemper (my actual biggest complaint is against the girl constantly blowing her nose next to me in the theater, but that doesn’t really count). With that said no characters feel like fillers in any capacity, or that they are simply there to fill some empty space in the scene. Instead, every actor, no matter how big or small their role, is given equal importance and time on screen to shine in memorable ways, from Terry Crews as a one scene work out instructor to Annie Mumolo as the seat partner and equally nervous flier to Wiig (who should also be noted for co-writing the film with Wiig).
With the cast accumulated (also including Maya Rudolph as the bride and best friend of Wiig, Rebel Wilson and Matt Lucas playing sibling roommates to Wiig, Melissa McCarthy and Rose Byrne as the last two bridesmaids, and Chris O’Dowd as a genuinely adorable and charming love interest to Wiig) Bridesmaids has the perfect excuse to attempt something that many films get docked for: run-on scenes. Whether it was scripted this way or just because of an overabundance of adlibbed bits that could not be thrown to the cutting room floor, plenty of scenes play out long past when an average scene would usually outstay its welcome with the audience. This time around instead of wishing them to end there is a hope for even more jokes to be worked in, creating scenes that are easily some of the best in the film (granted it is impossible for me to pick one scene as my favorite overall).
To sum up all of this horn tooting the simplest way to put it is that Bridesmaid is easily one of the most entertaining and hilarious comedies I have ever seen, so much so that after seeing it my face was hurting from all the laughter.
Final grade: A