By: Henry J. Fromage (Three Beers) -
One of the worst, and easiest, tacks for a movie review to take is to compare the subject at hand with another significantly more or less successful film with a similar premise. It’s a hard temptation to resist when you’re a bit stuck, and you realize that everybody’s going to make the comparison anyway. Let’s see if you can figure out what I’m thinking: a group of women with strong personalities and excellent comic chops are asked to be in the wedding party of an inoffensive friend. Can their personal issues and penchant for madcap antics be set aside for long enough not to ruin her big day?
I’m really not sure why they didn’t just title it Harry and the Hendersons II
Okay, so Bachelorette does set itself apart from Bridesmaids quite a bit, namely by making all of its characters extremely damaged and unlikable, but in a funny way. The humor is perfect for any person who likes their comedy like their 80 % cacao chocolate- extremely dark and exceedingly bitter. The three leads of Kirsten Dunst, Lizzy Caplan, and Isla Fisher all have their own damage- Dunst is an angry, controlling A-type, Caplan has an addictive personality and some serious issues from her previous relationship, and Fisher is just a vapid borderline manic-depressive.
Later in this film, these traits make for some decent drama, but for the majority of it they and the characters’ resulting bitchiness to everyone around them are the basis for some truly brutal humor. I for one am okay with that. Dunst is the real standout, playing a despicable character quite unlike anything you’ve seen from her before, but fans of the sadly underrated and canceled Party Down are more likely to geek out about the main romantic pairing- Caplan and Adam Scott.
The underlying bitterness threatens to overwhelm the pitch black humor after awhile. A bit of balance with some lighter elements would have made the truly dark stuff pop and produce some stronger laughs. On an unrelated note, Caplan is the latest gorgeous woman stricken with whatever bizarre flesh-eating disease that consumed Angelina Jolie’s curves.
I’ll give money, march for a cure, whatever it takes. Just make it stop!
There is nothing about this film that makes it a happy ending kinda movie. The only way I’ll accept the last act is if it was actually something that passed through Fisher’s head before succumbing to her Xanax overdose. Wait, maybe I should watch that again… this might be the Inception of bridesmaid comedies.
Or the St. Elsewhere
Okay, so I’ll give you what you want- this is no Bridesmaids. But it is a much darker, plenty funny comedy in its own right. Maybe go for broke and pair it with Young Adult. Just lock up the medicine cabinet first.
Take a Drink: every time Dunst acts like a Queen Bitch
Take a Drink: every time someone references a blowjob
Take a Drink: every time someone uses drugs