This Week in New York Insider's Guide to Arts & Culture in New York City Since 2001

1Jun/18

HOW I SPENT MY SUMMER VACATION: BRIDESMAIDS

A bride and her bridesmaids are looking for trouble in fab comesy

A bride and her bridesmaids are looking for trouble in fab Paul Feig comedy

BRIDESMAIDS (Paul Feig, 2011)
Nitehawk Cinema
136 Metropolitan Ave. between Berry St. & Wythe Ave.
Saturday, June 2, 11:30 am
Series continues through August 25
718-384-3980
www.bridesmaidsmovie.com
nitehawkcinema.com

First and foremost, don’t link Bridesmaids in with all those lousy Saturday Night Live one-note movies. And don’t assume it’s a silly chick flick either. As it turns out, Bridesmaids is one of the most consistently funny laugh-out-loud romps of this century. Directed by Freaks and Geeks creator Paul Feig, Bridesmaids is an endlessly clever and insightful examination of love, loneliness, and friendship starring SNL’s Kristen Wiig, who cowrote the smart script with Groundlings member Annie Mumolo (who makes a cameo as a nervous flyer). Wiig shows impressive depth and range as Annie, a perennial screw-up whose closest childhood friend, Lillian (Maya Rudolph), is marrying into a very snooty upper-crust family. After agreeing to be Lillian’s maid of honor, Annie gets involved in a battle of wits with Lillian’s future sister-in-law, the elegant Helen (a radiant Rose Byrne), who is determined to outshine Annie in every way possible and steal Lillian away from her. Already a mess — she had to close her bakery, she shares an apartment with a bizarre pair of British siblings, she works in a jewelry store where she drives away potential customers with her sorry tales of woe, and she allows herself to be treated miserably as a late-night booty call for a self-centered businessman (Jon Hamm) — Annie experiences a series of hysterical, pathetic setbacks as she attempts to organize the bridal shower and bachelorette party, including a riotous potty-humor scene in a high-end boutique that is likely to go down in comedy history for its sheer relentlessness.

The rest of the bridesmaids are quite a hoot — Becca (Ellie Kemper), the Disney-loving kewpie doll; Rita (Wendi McLendon-Covey), a foul-mouthed married mother who can’t wait to go crazy away from her family; and the groom’s burly sister, Megan (the hugely entertaining Melissa McCarthy, on the cusp of superstardom), who lives life without a filter. Annie is so caught up in her own failures that she doesn’t recognize when something potentially good enters her life, in the form of state trooper Nathan Rhodes (Chris O’Dowd). Wiig gives the finest performance of her career to that point as Annie, clearly a role that is very close to her heart. Despite the slapstick nature of many of the jokes, Bridesmaids is filled with heart and soul, making it one of the best comedies in years. Bridesmaids is screening June 2 at 11:30 am in the Nitehawk Cinema series “Brunch Movie” and “How I Spent My Summer Vacation.” The latter continues on Saturdays through August with such other films as Thelma and Louise, Stand by Me, Roman Holiday, and Before Sunrise.

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