Quick Hits on Bridesmaids – Paul Feig (2011)

Film Title: Bridesmaids

-Like I said in my post about Paul, I’m really starting to like Kristin Wiig more and more the farther away from SNL she gets. Whereas in Paul she was completely wasted on nonsensical throwaway jokes, she uses her wit and charm to the hilt in Bridesmaids, which she co-wrote with Annie Mumolo, the Groundlings writer who also played the woman freaking out on the plane. There usually seems to be a little bit of a chip on the shoulder of the female cast members of SNL as they try and live up to the likes of Billy Murray, Adam Sandler and Chris Farley (and even Jane Curtain and Gilda Radner), but it’s something that isn’t evident on Wiig’s shoulder, just as it wasn’t evident on Tina Fey’s shoulders before she broke out. To add on to that thought track, I believe Kristin Wiig to possess greater charm than Tina Fey, though I seem to be in the minority on the charm question as it doesn’t seem to be a big deciding factor to other people.

-The trailer doesn’t do Melissa McCarthy any favors, and at times they do try a little too much to coax every single laugh they can out of her character, but it’s a damn funny role as it plays out in the real time of the movie itself. It’s over the top, but in a good way

-Aside from that, I’m not anywhere close to this movie’s target demographic. I appreciated the humor, and was glad it wasn’t cloying or tiptoeing like female-driven comedies usually are (which even Baby Mama was to an extent). To use a bad phrase, it took a lot of balls to go down the path they went, and I’m glad they did.

 

Quick Hits on Paul – Greg Mattola (2011)

Paul

-I don’t quite understand why it was even attempted to keep Sigourney Weaver a secret in this film. She has one of the most distinctive film voices, and there wasn’t even really an attempt to mask it. At least it was a surprise when Madonna turned out to be The Blank in Dick Tracy, but it was rather silly to play it as a big finale reveal here. It’s obvious.

-I really appreciate the hell out of the nostalgia, though it does make me feel quite old. Most of the stuff that they’re nostalgic about is stuff that was 10 years old by the time it came out on video and I was old enough to process it, so I think it’s making me feel artificially old, not genuinely old, even though I’m about to turn 31 (that doesn’t even seem possible).

-Kristin Wiig, who I’m starting to like more and more as she gets away from SNL, was largely wasted on throwaway jokes. She handled them like a champ, but except for being adorable there was nothing really memorable about her in the movie. I suppose that is somewhat true of Nick Frost and Simon Pegg, too, to be honest. Paul himself, and Zoyle, really steal the show.

-I was skeptical about Bateman as Zoyle at first, he won me over by the end, and I was thankful that it wasn’t Paul Rudd playing the character.

-Even though I did enjoy the hell out of the nostalgic elements, there were probably too many of them. I did half expect there to be a shark and a man in a fedora being chased by a band of Nazis somewhere in there. I hope Abrams handles the direct references better in Super 8.

-I enjoyed it quite a lot overall, though there are more than a few spots where I ended up groaning or rolling my eyes. It probably didn’t even need to be as long as it was, but there is going to be an extended edition DVD out soon. I guess that’s just to be expected with comedies these days, but I can’t remember anything in any of the extended edition DVDs that I’ve seen that I thought should have stayed in the theatrical cut. The most recent one I can remember watching was Get Him to the Greek, which is much better in the theatrical cut of the movie. I liked Paul but not enough to give it extra time.