'Bridesmaids' Revisited: The Critics Think Its Fantastic

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Hinging the characteristically Judd Apatow brand of disgusting deadpan humor, SNL veteran Kristen Wiig is being called a "breakout star" for what is expected to be a big opening for Bridesmaids. One very famous man named Roger even compared her to Lucille Ball. Nearly everyone is unified in agreeing that the movie itself, although indeed very vulgar, is hilarious. Apatow turned some feminist bloggers onto a novel idea: his movies aren't just for bros But even if you want to take issue with the bromance-for-chicks notion, watching Bridesmaids is what you should be doing this weekend, say critics.

Manohla Darghis of The New York Times points out the refreshing role women play in this wedding movie: 

In most wedding movies an actress may have the starring part (though not always), but it’s only because her character’s function is to land a man rather than to be funny. Too many studio bosses seem to think that a woman’s place is in a Vera Wang.

Dana Stevens of Slate similarly appreciates the gap Bridesmaids refreshingly fills:

At long last, we have a smart comedy with dumb jokes—a giddy feminist manifesto that responds to the perennially circulated head-scratcher "Can women really be funny?" with a whoopee-cushion fart. I loved virtually every minute of Bridesmaids and forgave its few missteps the way you forgive your best friend for being a good-hearted klutz.

Peter Travers of Rolling Stone cuts to the chase for men who might be intimidated by a chick flick: 

Dudes always fear movies that might shrivel their sexual standing when women prioritize. Man up and see Bridesmaids. You just might learn something.

Joe Morgenstern of The Wall Street Journal is reconsidering his gender identity:

If this is only a chick flick, then call me a chick. Witty, raunchy and affecting, "Bridesmaids" crosses boundaries by blithely ignoring them. At one moment it's a broad-gauge farce that examines sex from a woman's point of view. (The findings are mixed at best.) At another it's a sophisticated comedy of manners, and class, that pits two bridesmaids against each other for control of the wedding, if not the bride's destiny. 

Karina Longworth of The Village Voice seems suspicious about the banter about feminism:

Bridesmaids’ need to be all things to all quadrants places an unfair burden on a film that, when not bending over backward to prove that girls can play on the same conventional comic field as boys, successfully dismantles both romantic and bromantic comedy formulas. This supposed great experiment in femme-com bears the distinct scars of having been “fixed”--out of fear or financial imperative--by and for dudes.

Roger Ebert of The Chicago Sun Times--he's the famous "Roger" by the way--liked the movie and find a compromise for naysayers:

Yet the movie has a heart. It heals some wounds, restores some hurt feelings, confesses some secrets, and in general, ends happily, which is just as well, because although there are many things audiences will accept from women in a comedy, ending miserably is not one of them. That may be sexist, but there you are.

And here's the breakout star herself, Kristen Wiig, appearing all bashful on The Daily Show on Thursday night.

This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.