APATOW AND WIIG BOTH DELIVER: “BRIDESMAIDS” PROVES TO BE MORE THAN CHICK FLICK

JILLIAN KERSTETTER
LAYOUT EDITOR

After years and years of horrifically predictable chick flicks concerning shamelessly recycled plots (i.e. the stressful and ridiculously eventful wedding, the unexpected pregnancy, the cheating best friend, etc.), director Paul Feig and producer Judd Apatow have finally broken the trend of “blah and bland” and created “Bridesmaids.” Quite easily one of the most unconventionally brilliant pieces of feminine hilarity the movie industry has seen in years, “Bridesmaids” mixes two parts vulgarity with three parts heartfelt humor and comes out completely on top of the heap of its chick flick predecessors. In fact, “Bridesmaids” shouldn’t even be labeled a chick flick. It’s far too genuine, clever and funny for that.

The plot of this movie is deceptively simple and is one that you will think you’ve seen over and over again. Lillian and Annie, played expertly by SNL veterans Maya Rudolph and Kristen Wiig, have been best friends since they were kids. Naturally, when Lillian announces her engagement and upcoming wedding, she asks Annie to be her maid of honor. Hilarity ensues as Annie attempts to organize and bring together the traditional events like the bridal shower and the bachelorette party, ultimately leading the entire cast of characters into progressively more hysterically awkward and funny situations. Eventually, the movie falls into line with the regular plot progression of most feel-good comedies and ends how you want it to. However, the storyline in this film is not important as the movie is really more of a character study, a look into the lives of modern day women and how they interact with each other and the world around them.

Despite the fact that this movie is, indeed, a hilarious comedy about a haphazard wedding gone wrong, the real story here is between Lillian and Annie. Their friendship is what gives this movie a pulse, a true purpose and applicable message for women. Wiig and Rudolph’s on-screen banter works impeccably, allowing the audience to simultaneously feel both their compassion and confliction towards each other, where their friendship has been and where it is going. Their back story shows us that the two have been there for each other through thick and thin and that, despite their flare-ups of frustration, their bond is stronger than anything else that’s thrown at them. Needless to say, after years and years of catty bitch-fights on screen concerning wedding dresses and wedding dates and who’s marrying what guy, it is decidedly refreshing to finally see a pair of on-screen women best friends who genuinely care for each other and stick it out until the end, without ever sacrificing each other for something stereotypically stupid (see Bride Wars circa 2009). Essentially, this movie is about smart, strong, independent women and is the total lovechild of “The Hangover” and “The First Wives Club.”

There should be nothing but praise for this film as everything in it is tastefully and perfectly done, right down to the amazing cast. Wiig, who also flexed her writing muscles for this film and Rudolph are spectacular and almost flawless in their comedia execution. This movie will most assuredly go down as Wiig’s masterpiece of the moment. Coming in as support, but equally as fantastic, are Rose Byrne, Melissa McCarthy, Ellie Kemper and Wendi McLendon-Covey as the rest of Lillian’s bridal party. Jon Hamm and Chris O’Dowd play male love interests for Annie. Easily the biggest scene stealer of the co-stars is Melissa Mc- Carthy (who most of you might recognize from TVs “Gilmore Girls”) playing Megan, the groom’s off-kilter and completely hysterical sister who serves as a main source of belly laughs for the entire course of the film.

Rose Byrne also brings her claws out as the semi-antagonist of the film, playing the rich, perfect, catty maid of honor-wannabe, Helen, who tries to usurp Annie. Overall, each cast member, no matter how small their part, brought their A-game to this movie and put together a film full of laughs and real emotion.

Regardless of how clichéd the plot might actually sound, this movie is anything but ordinary, old or tired. The laughs are new, the situations both comical and believable and the tone oddly dripping with realism. Feig, Apatow, and Wiig really pulled out all the stops on this film and came together to produce a little movie with a big heart. “Bridesmaids” is definitely the first of many crowd-pleasers coming to theatres for the summer season. Do yourself a favor and RSVP. You won’t regret it.

Photo Courtesey of: Wikipedia // Apptowinc

The Cougar Chronicle The independent student news site of California