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Bridesmaids movie poster

Bridesmaids: Movie Review

Genre: Comedy
Rated: R
Directed by: Paul Feig

Starring: Kristen Wiig, Maya Rudolph, Jon Hamm, Rose Byrne, Melissa McCarthy, Ellie Kemper, Chris O'Dowd
Released by: Universal Pictures

In Short: Co-writer and star Kristen Wiig takes center stage in her raucous, female-centric comedy about a down-on-her-luck maid of honor planning her best friend's wedding.

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One Small Step for Wiig, One Giant Leap for Comediennes

A female-centric film starring a cast of attractive women is nothing new, but female comedies are few and far between. Not because women aren't funny, but because they rarely get the opportunity to showcase that talent — especially in a mostly female cast. In the past, beautiful and funny have not been synonymous in Hollywood — actresses were one or the other. "Bridesmaids" proves that this is no longer the case.

For the first time, Kristen Wiig ("Saturday Night Live," "Knocked Up") takes center stage as the down-on-her-luck Annie, whose best friend (Maya Rudolph) just got engaged. While dealing with her own problems — her love life, her job and her (really weird) roommates — Annie must perform her maid of honor duties, for which she competes with the bride's "new" best friend (Rose Byrne), without losing her mind. Because it was written by two women (Wiig and Annie Mumulo), the characters' actions and attitudes — although a bit crass and over-the-top — seem more true-to-life.

Kristen Wiig and Maya Rudolph in Bridesmaids Melissa McCarthy, Ellie Kemper, Rose Byrne, Wendi McLendon-Covey, Maya Rudolph and Kristen Wiig in Bridesmaids

From the moment the film starts, the laughs begin, and you realize that this isn't just a chick flick. The performances are pitch perfect — Wiig and Rudolph are both convincing and funny as long-time best friends; Chris O'Dowd proves himself to be a charming leading man, while Jon Hamm is great as the ridiculously handsome jerk; and Melissa McCarthy somehow pulls off gross-yet-lovable as the groom's sister Megan. The problem with such a large ensemble cast, though, is that you only really get to know, or even care about, a few characters. This is unfortunate for the other two bridesmaids in particular, played by Ellie Kemper ("The Office") and Wendi McLendon-Covey ("Reno 911"), as their roles aren't very well-developed.

If Wiig and Mumulo were going for a female version of "The Hangover," they didn't exactly nail it, but they got very close. While "Bridesmaids" is enjoyable and really fun, certain jokes/scenes seemed to wear out their welcome, creating lulls and making the movie feel long. With a little more editing, it could have been tighter and a whole lot funnier. That isn't to say that this won't be a successful comedy. Sure, women planning a wedding is a clichéd movie plot, but the writing and performances make it worth the while.

Reviewed by Cara Trump


(Updated: 05/13/11 CT)

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