Plot – Competition between the maid of honour and a bridesmaid, over who is the bride’s best friend, threatens to upend the life of an out-of-work pastry chef – Bridesmaids.
Director – Paul Feig
Releaed – 2011
Bridesmaids is a massive breath of fresh air in a world of rather forgettable female empowerment comedies such as Ghostbuster (2016) and Charlie’s Angels (2019). And one of the few that successfully overcame the gender barrier that, unfortunately, affects most female-fronted films, making almost $300m worldwide. Not only that, it’s one of the few “rom-com’s” that I would happily sit down to re-watch over and over.
I would suggest that part of what made Bridesmaids a success was the decision to mostly avoid the usual cliches seen in the vast majority of romantic-comedies, filled with an abundance of overly sentimental plot-points, uninspired slapstick comedy and constant wedding talk. Instead, Bridesmaids sets out to be an alternative to these “race to the wedding” movies, which I would suggest is down to the excellent writing of Kristen Wiig and Annie Mumolo along with the direction of Feig, who has shown a knack of directing female-fronted movies in a way that feels authentic and natural.
The film also boasts great comedic performances from Kristen Wiig, Melissa McCarthy and Maya Rudolph, all of which are given plenty of the opportunities to shine and providing some gut-bustlingly hilarious lines along the way, notable the incredibly memorable gross-out moment involving a bathroom sink and a busy road. Chris O’Dowd also excels as the surprisingly well-developed Officer Nathan Rhodes, a role that other films/filmmakers would have left as a one-dimensional love interest and nothing more.
Bridesmaids doesn’t entirely avoid the wedding movie clichés, such as the bride getting cold feet, a big name musical act performing at the reception or the massively elaborate bachelorette parties. However, the movie did so much correctly that you can forgive it falling into the familiar from time to time.