I don’t really do movie reviews. Which is a little odd, because I used to write a ton about pop culture. And I probably should write more again because I love it like my own child.
But I find it hard to write a “review,” because I am not a film kid who analyzes these things. I can critically analyze history and art and design and culture, but films, tv, and books? Those are my fun time.
That’s part of the reason why I just wanted to give my two cents on this one before I’ve even read the viewpoints of the internet ladies I adore and respect so much. (Also cuz they’re like smart, yo.)
So I present to you:
Is Bridesmaids A Step Forward or A Step Back for Female Comedy and Gender Relations?: Or, A Debate with Myself.
1. Many say that the success of Bridesmaids will pave the way for other female comedies to get green-lit, which is obviously a very excellent thing.
Women are funny. Anyone who says differently is an asshole (not to mention a misogynist). But very few women, think Lucille Ball, Carol Burnett, and Rosanne Barr, have begun legendary comediennes, whereas there are more famous male comedians that you can shake a dick, err stick, at.
Well I’m not much of an academic these days, but I would argue that it’s the studios and the executives.
Yes, we’re no longer dealing with the crap that were were years ago about what women can and can’t do on stage/screen (have you seen the Joan Rivers documentary!?), but we are still dealing with [elderly] male executives and their OBSESSION with the bottom line.
And THEY [wrongly] think the bottom line is that smart, funny women don’t sell tickets.
(Yea, we will buy the hell out of shoes and purses, but movie tickets? Nooo. We let the men pick the movies!)
So until the [male] power behind the movie-making cash money changes, the majority of the female writers and actresses out there (a handful of women like Drew Barrymore and Nancy Juvonen and their best efforts aside) will still have trouble getting their projects out the gate (not to mention getting equal marketing and press efforts to male-driven comedies), Bridesmaids or no Bridesmaids.
2. Women can do physical comedy….so they can also do toilet humor, right? And everyone loves toilet humor, right?
Why yes, yes us woman can do physical comedy. Again, we’ve all seen Lucille Ball (and before her the incomparable Rosalind Russell), and Carol Burnett, and more recent ladies like Always Sunny’s Kaitlin Olson kick some physical comedy ass. We can do it, and still be ladies, and still be sexy. It is so.
But the pooping and the vomiting?
Was there for the dudes. Because I mean come on. I don’t care how nice the salon was, and how much these ladies wanted to be “there” for their bride.
Women know when to find a toilet. Come hell or come high water.
Unless maybe in a foreign country. But even when I puked on the Vatican I found a trash can. And a planter.
So I’d like a little realism in my female toilet humor please. Like the drunk pee on a sidewalk. Or the wilderness camping poop.
AND if you really want to shock?! Give me a menstrual blood gag, and THEN we’ll have comedy equality. Someone needs to tell THOSE stories. Because mine are private.
3. Woman can have sex like men! Or they can’t? Or is it that men can have sex like men! No wait, they’re sensitive too…
The message I think the Rhodes character (played by Chris O’Dowd—watch The IT Crowd!!) was trying to get across is that every is a PERSON. And some people are dicks, and others are good people. Some of us—like me, like Kristen Wiig’s character—can be dicks AND good people.
But this message is overshadowed by the portrayal of Wiig’s seemingly masochistic love life, which hearkened back to the Sex & the City girls’ constant attempts to “have sex like men” and not get attached but always winding up getting hurt anyway.
Which brings up my question to the masses: do women really act like this?
Do you really keep going back to the assholes and ignore the good guys? I guess a lot of people must otherwise it wouldn’t be a trope… but it makes me want to give a lecture or fuck, a whole seminar series.
I mean, I don’t want to brag, and I can honestly say there are few things I’ve done right in my life but one was knowing when to ditch the loser. Even when it was before breakfast.
So that first scene, I was all excited, waiting for my modern female-written comedy. Ok here we go, she’s having bad sex, ok…sneaking to the bathroom, washing up, ok, we’re gonna grab the clothes and get out of there…
And then she stays?!
The sex was bad, and you could tell by his dialogue mid-coitus that this guy was no prize piece…so um, leave!
That’s what guys do, right?
Cause having sex like men (if we’re STILL trying to do that), doesn’t entail making yourself up at 7am to get back in bed and lie through your teeth saying you “don’t want a relationship.”
4. Men like Rhodes exist. You just have to find him.
As for the first part: Yup. They do. I can’t argue with it, I have one. It was shocking, and he will vouch that I didn’t believe it for like 6 months, but it was ALL true.
As for the second. NOOO. You will not find him, you must stop looking. Instead, you have to stand still, get on with the other parts of you life, and short of joining a nunnery, leave a space for a good one to find you. And most importantly, get your head out of your ass long enough to recognize one when he finds you.
5. Female rivalry accomplishes nothing, and in fact, only set us back as a whole.
Except HI-larious hijinks.
Annie (Wiig) had her integrity…and Helen (Rose Byrne) had…everything else.
And you never really knew where Maya Rudolph stood on any of it.
Sometimes I think life would be easier if friendship came with written codes of honor, like the knighthood.
Children should come with instruction manuals too.
Yea right. That doesn’t happen, and both women’s reaction to being thrown into the high pressure cooker of weddings is totally justified—and I related to both of them.
I just didn’t like that at its core this was a movie based on the shenanigans of jealousy and rivalry. Is pettiness what makes woman interesting?
Because while both character’s reactions to the situation were understandable, their actions were just petty, with no perceivable consequences, and no real resolution. There was a bit of “a girl’s will be girl’s” cop out to the conclusion of Annie and Helen.
I did love this movie for its moments of a deeply truthful portrayal of womenhood and female friendship. The part where Annie says to Megan, “I just miss her,” nearly broke my composure. And obviously, the cookie.
And Kristin Wiig? Well I kind of want to marry her. Because that girl acted her pants off, oftentimes with the subtlest of glances, and yet the entire time you knew exactly what was running through her head. Brava. She is my secret dream of being an actress (and a writer!) personified.