Thursday, 27 December 2012

Devouring Films: Bridesmaids

Bridesmaids wins the award of the film I have watched most whilst blogging and yet have never actually talked about it here. I realise that's a really long name for an award, and yet it is the truth. The thing is, I LOVE Bridesmaids so much, and also it makes me kind of sad (I kind of AM Annie in a lot of ways, only I never had the success to begin with) and ALSO I find much of it hilarious, but it's almost like... I didn't really have an angle to write about it from, and frankly I'm a little bit tired of just going 'OMG this is so amazing I love it!' about things I love, because, even though it's true, it's also kind of boring. Like, really boring.

But. Now I finally have an angle! I was watching it last week, thoroughly enjoying myself/feeling a little uneasy as always with it, when I realised exactly what I wanted to talk about in it. And that's about girls, and friends, and the ways that girls are friends with each other. The thing is this. Annie and Lilian have been best friends forever, and Lilian announces that she's getting married and wants Annie to be her chief bridesmaid- so far, so good. At the same time, Annie's life is imploding, and has been for a while, but still she's determined to be a good bridesmaid for Lilian and make things really nice for her because she's a good friend. At Lilian's engagement party, Annie discovers that Lilian has a new friend,  Helen, and that she's rich and poised and a lot of other things that Annie isn't. Mayhem ensues.

So my thing is this. I'm kind of wondering who the worse friend is, Annie or Lilian? There are two really really good cases for each of them, to be fair. It seems like the film wants to set Annie up as the bad friend- she gives the whole wedding party food poisoning, gets them kicked off a plane so they never make it to Vegas, and has a complete freak out at the wedding shower thing, all of which are really very funny incidents and necessary to make the film what it is. So Annie accidentally, and then on purpose, ruins a few things about Lilian's wedding, and that is not very good friend behaviour.

But the things that Lilian does, or rather doesn't do? I mean, she's getting married and everything so obviously she has a lot on her plate, and I don't expect her to like babysit Annie through every disheartening experience she's having, but the thing is? Annie's life is pretty rough, and Lilian's too busy hanging out with her new friend who can afford to do a lot more fun things with her, and it does very much seem like she kind of forgets Annie in the shuffle, and it feels kind of unforgivable. The thing is, hilarious as they are, the things that Annie does to ruin things are basically entirely accidental (she didn't cook the food that poisoned them, and it was freaking Helen who like drugged her on the plane!) whereas Lilian's neglect feels a lot more purposeful and vindictive. Annie really needs her, and all she can do is complain that her wedding things aren't going perfectly. Which just really sucks.

I don't know, maybe I just sympathise with Annie more because I am her (minus the sex with Jon Hamm which, frankly, would make me feel better, I think) but it really does seem to me that Lilian is guilty of real friend neglect, whilst Annie is just guilty of... choosing bad restaurants and listening to Helen that one time on the plane. But how about YOU? Have you seen Bridesmaids? (of course you have). Do you have feelings about who is the worse friend? I really really want to hear them!

9 comments:

  1. What an interesting angle! I never thought of it that way, though I can see what you think. Just to be a cop-out, I don't know that I think either Lillian or Annie are bad friends. I know bad stuff happened, and it sucked for both of them, but they both got over all of that pretty easily, in my opinion. Not that they didn't both make really horrible mistakes, but I think that's what the movie is about - that the friendship they have is stronger than the difficulties that exist in their lives right now.

    I really enjoyed this movie but I was just *slightly* annoyed that Annie had to end it with a man, too (even though he has awesome). I just wish that sometimes, women could be single in movies and that's ok.

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    1. Haha, total cop out! But I definitely agree that it's like their friendship is more important than like any adversities it faces, but I still think that Lilian really could have, nay, should have done a better job as a friend.

      Dude, I totally hear ya! Even though Rhodes is SO lovely, I would have preferred that she ended the movie with a job rather than a man. That would genuinely have been more satisfying for me!

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  2. I love Melissa McCarthy in this (although who doesn't?) and the scene in the bridal shop, but overall I was kind of disappointed. WAY too much friendship shit and not enough general hilarity. Plus yeah, they're not great friends.

    In terms of movies that 'prove' women can be funny while still not being stupidly sappy, I think Bad Teacher does a much better job. But then, I just love that movie. A lot.

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    1. YESSSSSS Melissa McCarthy, she is incredible. Buuuut... What about the scene on the plane? That's the funniest! And and at the bridal shower? (I find the bridal shop scene way less funny because of a time I had food poisoning... We don't speak of it.) BUT I will say that I'm definitely not like 'THIS IS THE FUNNIEST EVER!' because OMG Annie's life makes me super sad. And waaay too empathyish.

      I thought I'd really hate Bad Teacher, but actually I do kiind of think it's hilare. Although it's pretty annoying that a large part of that movie revolves around Cameron Diaz trying to get Justin Timberlake, when they are clearly, CLEARLY not ever ever going to work! But anyway, yes, I found it way funnier than I thought I would. (I still like Bridesmaids better though. Just making that clear.)

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  3. So I only saw this movie the once (I should rewatch it, I remember it being funny) but I agree - they're both kind of lousy friends. I think that Lillian's neglect is the worse offense, b/c DUDE be there for your friend, her life is falling apart. But at the same time... I'm a lazy friend, and sadly I could totally see myself being her. Not necessarily ditching a friend to hang out with a richer friend, but not wanting to be bogged down by the friend who is so self-destructive and has a lot of drama going on, ya know? I seem to remember wishing Annie would just chill and get a hold of herself.

    Good angle, btw ;-)

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    1. I know what you mean with all the drama of friends, but in Bridesmaids it's like... Annie hasn't really done that much for all these things to keep happening to her (obviously she's not entirely blameless, but she does seem to be a victim of circumstance a LOT of the time) and she doesn't like whine to Lilian very much or anything, and it's just like... it wouldn't kill her to be there more. She really just seems to care more about her wedding and all the crap that surrounds it rather than what's happening to her friend, which kind of sucks.

      Thank you for liking my angle! Seriously, it was either this, or me going 'OMG, the scene on the plane is the FUNNIEST EVER, Kristen Wiig should just be drunk all the time!' Because, you know, I like that scene...

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  4. I never really thought of how bad of a friend Lilian was being. Well except when everyone was like "We should do all this expensive stuff, like going to Vegas" when it was CLEAR that Annie couldn't afford that. But then that was mostly Helen (then the others) being jerks.

    Melissa McCarthy was the best one though.

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  5. The Vegas thing totally was Helen and the others being jerks. Because I genuinely think Lilian would have loved going to her parents' cabin! Annie knows her! But she's definitely more of a bad friend by what she *doesn't* do, than what she does, I think. (The Vegas thing was especially bad since Annie was CLEARLY scared of flying! But LOL THAT ENTIRE SCENE!)

    I love Melissa McCarthy in this movie sooooo much though. Damn, she's amazing. There are many many many days where I need her to come over and bite ME in the ass...

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  6. Dude, this was one of my biggest issues with the film. I walked out complaining to Tom very loudly how unfair everyone was about the Vegas thing and how shitty Lillian was during everything. I didn't think Annie was perfect or anything, but I definitely felt sad for her like the entire time. Except with the John Hamm sex because COME ON!

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