MOVIE REVIEW: Bridesmaids

Annie’s mom was played by the late Jill Clayburgh, and that made me a little sad as well.

The Wife and I have been to but one film since February, that being Made in Dagenham in April. It wasn’t for lack of movies we’ve wanted to see, but rather a lack of people to watch the child.

So when we had the chance to finally go on our (not-quite-) monthly date Saturday afternoon, July 2, we decided to go to the movies. I was surprised to discover that my demure bride chose Bridesmaids, which was on my list, especially since it’d been around for a while.

After dropping off the Daughter at a friend’s house, we went to the 12:35 pm showing at the Spectrum in Albany. The Spectrum is more an art-house theater but it shows mass-market films too, to balance the bottom line.

I should note that of the three movies in preview, the one I’d most like to see is Buck, which is a true story of a horse whisperer.

As for Bridesmaids, it was not really what I expected. It was a Judd Apatow film, so I anticipated it to be gross, but it wasn’t as raucous as I assumed. Or maybe I’ve gotten inured to it. The most tasteless sequence actually made some sense in the context of the movie.

Annie (Kristen Wiig, who co-wrote the screenplay, along with Annie(!) Mumolo) is a young woman with a failed business, weird roommates, a dead-end job she got because of her mother, and an unsatisfactory relationship (an uncredited Jon Hamm). But her BFF Lillian (Saturday Night Live alum Maya Rudolph) has gotten engaged, and Annie’s the maid of honor. She soon gets into a competition with Lillian’s much newer friend Helen (Rose Byrne), from which much of the comedy ensues.

The real revelation here is Melissa McCarthy. My wife and I watched seven seasons of Gilmore Girls, where she played the sweet friend Sookie, but my wife did not recognize her here as the take-no-prisoners sister of the groom, Megan. She was probably the best part of the picture. Not incidentally, the guy she sits with within the plane sequence, one of the funnier parts of the film, is played by Ben Falcone, Melissa’s real-life husband.

Mostly though, I thought that Annie was sad, and she was having a nearly movie-long pity party. Not that I didn’t think she was “real”, only that she wasn’t that much fun to be around. Or maybe it was me. Somewhere near the end, a couple of women behind us were laughing hysterically over something in the film, to which I said, as Annie might have, “Really?”

Also, Annie’s mom was played by the late Jill Clayburgh, and that made me a little sad as well.

Still, I “cared” about many of the characters, and I liked the ending. I’m glad I saw it, though I think my wife liked it better than I did.