Ultimate Decades 2021 Blogathon Kick-Off: Bridesmaids (2011) Review

Hello, friends!

I’m excited to be the first to welcome you to the sixth annual Ultimate Decades Blogathon, hosted by Kim from Tranquil Dreams and myself! In the past, the Ultimate Decades Blogathon focused on a specific decade, from the 1970s all the way to the 2010s. Rather than revisit those decades again, the format this year is slightly different. Instead of spotlighting a single decade, the the Ultimate Decades Blogathon is now focusing on films released in years that end in the same digit as the current year. Since this year is 2021, all the films in this blogathon were released in years that end in 1. Exciting, right? I think the participants this year have really outdone themselves and chosen some great films from across the decades. Now, to kick things off, I will share my review of a film that came out just last decade. Without further ado, here is my review of the 2011 Paul Feig comedy Bridesmaids.

Bridesmaids movie posterSynopsis
Jillian (Maya Rudolph) asked her best friend, Annie (Kristen Wiig), to be the Maid of Honor in her wedding. Annie finds competition in Helen (Rose Byrne) for Jillian’s attention.

When a film features an all female ensemble, you would be forgiven if you expect a sappy love story about the women trying to catch themselves a man. If you went into Bridesmaids with that expectation, you would be wrong. Bridesmaids takes inspiration from films like The Hangover and Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy, showcasing that women can at time be just as crude as men. However, Bridesmaids never tries to be like similar films featuring ensembles of male buddies and sets out to show that female relationships do not revolve around β€œtrying to find the one” as many movies before would have you believe.

The script, written by Annie Mumolo and star Kristen Wiig, is what sets Bridesmaids apart from other female ensemble movies at the time. While vulgar and crude, which is not uncommon in comedy films (especially in the late 2000s/early 2010s), Mumolo and Wiig still manage to make it feel unique. Since this is a movie about women written by women, the relationships between the female cast feel like actual relationships. There’s a true feeling of genuineness to the characters and their interactions between each other. Like many comedies, the script takes something simple, like being a bridesmaid, and puts it under a magnifying glass, exaggerating the experience yet still keeping it relatable. While there were female-led comedy ensemble movies before Bridesmaids, they saw varied success. This film feels like it marked a turning point, proving that the comedies written by and starring women can be just as funny and entertaining as those written by and starring men.

Along with the script, the cast is absolutely stellar. Wiig seems to play off everyone around her. Her scenes with Rudolph feel like the pair have been friends since childhood. Wiig and Rose Byrne, who plays her rival for Lily’s attention, are an absolute hoot when they are together. Wendi McLendon-Covey plays the worn-down mom to perfection. The Office alum Ellie Kemper channels her inner Erin and is adorably awkward. I am a huge fan of the British television show The IT Crowd, so seeing Chris O’Dowd was a special treat. However, the stand-out performance to me was Melissa McCarthy. In one of her first feature film roles, she knocks it out of the park. Every scene of hers is laugh-out-loud funny and her comedic timing is impeccable. It’s not hard to see why her film career took off after starring in this movie. Even though there are many characters, Bridesmaids manages to balance them, providing enough screen time for the supporting characters to feel relevant but still enable the leads to stand out.

I thought Bridesmaids was GREAT πŸ˜€ Written by Annie Mumolo and Kristen Wiig and directed by Paul Fieg, it opened up the door for modern-day female-led comedies, showing that female-led comedies can be raunchy too and not just reserved for sappy love stories. What’s more, the characters are extremely likable and the entire cast is outstanding. At 10 years old, Bridesmaids has aged like a fine wine, and keeps getting better with every viewing.


Cast & Crew
Paul Feig – Director
Kristen Wiig – Writer
Annie Mumolo – Writer
Michael Andrews – Writer

Kristen Wiig – Annie
Maya Rudolph – Lillian
Melissa McCarthy – Megan
Rose Byrne – Helen
Wendi McLendon-Covey – Rita
Ellie Kemper – Becca
Chris O’Dowd – Rhodes
Rebel Wilson – Brynn
Matt Lucas – Gil
JIll Clayburgh – Annie’s Mom
Jon Hamm – Ted
Tim Heidecker – Dougie

Tomorrow, my co-host Kim will post her entry on her site in part two of the Ultimate Decades Blogathon 2021 kick-off.

As the blogathon progresses, you can check out this compilation page on Kim’s site to view all of the entries.

Until next time, cheers!

The Heat Review

The Heat was the the next movie of my Original Six reviews.Β  I really, really enjoyed it as you will soon find out. It can be formulaic as a buddy cop story but Bullock and McCarthy work so well together.Β  Definitely up there as one of my favorite buddy cop movies and maybe even a favorite comedy.

The Heat movie posterSynopsis
By-the-book FBI special agent Sarah Ashburn (Sandra Bullock) must work with tough-as-nails Boston detective Shannon Mullins (Melissa McCarthy) to bring down a drug lord. The problem is neither works well with others. They must learn to work together or risk losing what is most important to them.

The Heat is absolutely hilarious. McCarthy steals the show in this film. The first time I really saw her in a leading role was Identity Thief earlier this year and I thought she was great in that movie, too. She is quickly becoming one of my favorite comedic actresses and can’t wait to see what she’ll do next. Bullock, on the other hand, has always been one of my favorite actresses and she is great as usual. What makes the comedy work so well is the chemistry between these two. They play so well off each other, it is the female version of Will Ferrell and John C. Reilly.

Although McCarthy and Bullock’s chemistry stole the show, the supporting cast was great as well. My favorite was a drug dealer played by Spoken Reasons (John A. Baker, Jr.). The scenes with the Mullins family where also pretty good. Of course being set Boston, there is the mandatory Boston accent joke.

The core of some of the best buddy-cop movies is the initial conflict between the two characters, particularly when the two are very different (see Lethal Weapon or Tango and Cash). The Heat is no different, and I think that is what makes it work so well. The first half of the movie when Bullock and McCarthy are conflicted make up some of the best moments of the film.

The plot follows in the footsteps of many cop movies and can be a bit formulaic. Unfortunately, this can make the make it predictable. If you’ve seen one, you’ve seen them all. But this is a tried-and-true formula, so I can’t knock it too hard, just don’t expect anything ground breaking in the story.

The Heat is one of the best buddy-cop movies I have seen in a long time. Although the plot was predictable, it was refreshing to see a buddy-cop film with female leads (none are coming to mind off the top of my head). With great chemistry between Bullock and McCarthy, and an excellent supporting cast, I couldn’t stop laughing.



Cast & Crew
Paul Feig – Director
Katie Dippold – Writer
Mike Andrews – Composer

Sandra Bullock – Ashburn
Melissa McCarthy – Mullins
Demian Bichir – Hale
Marlon Wayans – Levy
Michael Rapaport – Jason Mullins
Spoken Reasons – Rojas
Dan Bakkendahl – Craig
Taran Killam – Adam
Michael McDonald – Julian
Thomas F. Wilson – Captain Woods
Kaiklin Olson – Tatiana
Michael Tucci – Mr. Mullins
Jane Curtin – Mrs. Mullins
Joey McIntyre – Peter Mullins
Bill Burr – Mark Mullins
Nathan Corddry – Michael Mullins
Jessica Chaffin – Gina
Jamie Denbo – Beth