|'there's something else here again; the mistaken assumption by scriptwriters and directors that moments of huge embarrassment automatically equal huge laughs'|
The occasionally hilarious Bridesmaids is punctuated by moments of laugh-out-loud hilarity and an endearingly daffy performance from Kristen Wiig but there's something else here again; the mistaken assumption by scriptwriters and directors that moments of huge embarrassment automatically equal huge laughs. The long, awkward, sex scene between Annie (Wiig) and Ted (Jon Hamm) is funny because it builds the characters and is directed in a zippy slapstick manner by Paul Feig; the long, awkward, engagement party battle between Annie and Helen (Rose Byrne) isn't because it's two people spouting unfunny dialogue at static cameras. It's not only Bridesmaids that's trying to make those jokes far too often, but they are prevalent here and they're as irritatingly pace-stopping as anywhere else.
The rest of the narrative moves on at a pleasant enough clip, although there's a noticeable lack of locations available for the assembled throng to ply their trade in. A flight to somewhere new seems to be cut short for budget reason as much as for comedy ones, although the jokes plough on regardless, a change in locale presumably saved for the sequel.
At its strongest, Feig assembles a buddy comedy with characters well-rounded enough to laugh and cringe at in equal measure, whilst at its weakest, Bridesmaids spends too much time looking at non-wedding-party members who offer little to the narrative or the laugh count. The late introduction of Annie's mum (Jill Clayburgh) is a mistake, Chris O'Dowd gets by on charm alone, Matt Lucas and Rebel Wilson are cheap jokes, not characters.
There is, importantly, some heart here too, Wiig proving adept enough with the broadly-played drama as she is with the standup, ditto the brilliantly cast Maya Rudolph. Perhaps the final criticism is the fact that this suffers from the patented 'Quentin Tarantino Effect', with every character talking in the same manner as Annie, caught under the influence of a Wiig co-penned script. Fans of her and associate Annie Mumolo will therefore lap it up.
Bridesmaids is playing on Sky Premiere until Thursday and is available on Sky Anytime thereafter.
'soon becomes a tiresome tale of a lonely woman looking for love' - Ric's Reviews