Thursday, September 27, 2012

Bachelorette (2012)

Seen: At the AMC/Loews at Boston Common.

A few days after taking in my most-anticipated raunchy ladycentric new release, I knocked off the more widely-publicized Bachelorette. I'd heard various Bridesmaids comparisons, which is fine, but mostly I was excited to see Isla Fisher and Lizzy Caplan getting drunk and making jokes together. Those ladies are FUNNY, you guys. Anyway. So most of the movie takes place the day before Becky's (Rebel Wilson) wedding. She invites her three high school best friends- Regan (Kirsten Dunst), Gena (Lizzy Caplan), and Katie (Isla Fisher)- to be her bridesmaids, and while the three of them are happy for her, they're also jealous and plagued with feelings of inadequacy that their own lives aren't on track while their seemingly least-marriageable (read: not pretty) friend is so settled. After accidentally (and quite drunkenly) ruining Becky's wedding dress, the three women find themselves running around New York City in the middle of the night trying to find a tailor, falling into various personal and romantic mishaps along the way.

With a great cast that includes supporting appearances from James Marsden, Adam Scott, and Andrew Rannells, Bachelorette delivers all the bawdy, sexual humor that was promised, while trying to maintain something of an emotional center. The general premise is simple but effective, and I liked how the various relationships progressed (or regressed) as the night wore on. Caplan and Scott are the standout pair, unsurprisingly, with a fucked up backstory but unquestionable chemistry. Fisher is the most endearing, also unsurprisingly, and her ditzy, oscillatingly self-aware party girl is the perfect mix of comedic exaggeration and sympathetic realism. Dunst doesn't stand out as much, primarily because her character is more reserved and she's often the straight one to her two ridiculous comrades, but she does get a few great moments.

The thing about this movie is, while it definitely made me laugh and I had a fun enough time while I was watching it, it's really mean-spirited and rather haphazard. Everyone onscreen is basically an awful person (except maybe Rebel Wilson, but she only gets a few scenes), and it's kind of exhausting to watch them all destroy each other and themselves for most of the film's running time. The story goes to some dark places, touching upon abortion, eating disorders, drug addiction, and suicide, among other topics, but I wouldn't call it a dark comedy. The script sort of throws in these sudden dramatic issues to help flesh out the characters and offer some motivation for their actions, and while at times it works, at others it's just out of place.

I don't know. I liked the movie overall but I don't feel the need to see it again, you know? Except maybe just the Lizzy Caplan parts...


Pair This Movie With: Yes ok as much as I'm tired of the comparison, it would make a good double feature with Bridesmaids. But also I think a movie about high school girls would work well, since Bachelorette has got reminiscing and such. Mean Girls comes to mind, especially for the Lizzy Caplan connection.


  1. Good review Alex. It has a dark and mean edge to it that really kept me involved, but that was pretty much it. Didn't laugh as much as I was expecting to.

  2. Lizzy Caplan saved this movie as acidic as she was.