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This 2011 movie is Netflix’s most popular comedy. Here’s why you should watch it

Bridesmaids is back on Netflix, and it’s already one of the most popular movies according to Netflix’s latest update. That’s really good for a 12-year-old movie, but director Paul Feig’s Bridesmaids was already considered a game-changer when it hit theaters in 2011. Back then, a raunchy female-led comedy wasn’t exactly on the top of Hollywood’s wish list. But Bridesmaids defied industry expectations and became a breakout hit.

Kristen Wiig stars in the film as Annie Walker, a woman who has hit a rough patch in her life. The one thing that Annie has going for her is her unshakable friendship with Lillian Donovan (Maya Rudolph). When Lillian announces her plans to get married, she makes Annie her maid of honor and introduces her to the rest of the bridesmaids: Helen Harris III (Rose Byrne), Megan Price (Melissa McCarthy), Rita (Wendi McLendon-Covey), and Becca (Ellie Kemper). Above everything else, Annie just wants to make sure that her friend’s wedding plans go off without a hitch. Unfortunately for Annie, things quickly fall apart and it’s all her fault.

Unlike some of the other Netflix films that are enjoying a resurgence of popularity, Bridesmaids was a legitimate blockbuster. Regardless, that doesn’t mean it should be ignored now that it’s regaining its prominence. Therefore, we’re going to share three reasons why you should watch Bridesmaids on Netflix.

It’s a female comedian showcase

The cast of Bridesmaids.
Universal Pictures

Bridesmaids has an absolutely stellar lineup of leading ladies: Kristen Wiig, Maya Rudolph, Rose Byrne, Melissa McCarthy, Wendi McLendon-Covey, and Ellie Kemper. Of this group, Byrne was the only one who wasn’t a comedian, but she proved that she has comedic chops in her later films like Neighbors, and in her Apple TV+ original series, Physical and Platonic. Kemper also went on to bigger things as the star of Netflix’s Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt.

All six of these actresses are hilarious throughout Bridesmaids, especially when the movie indulges in some very raunchy humor. But most of the laughs come from Annie’s rivalry with Helen. The frustration that builds in Annie is visible in every aspect of Wiig’s face and body language as she watches Helen upstage her at every turn until Annie just can’t take it anymore.

The script is heartfelt

The cast of Bridesmaids.

Wiig not only starred in the movie, she co-wrote the script for Bridesmaids with screenwriter and actress Annie Mumolo (Confess, Fletch). As much as the film leans into broad and even crude comedy, it’s also a surprisingly poignant look at a woman whose life is in ruins. Wiig’s character, Annie, is so down on her luck that there’s a touch of desperation in everything that she does. Annie has lost her bakery business, her boyfriend, and the financial security that she used to enjoy. Now, Annie has to watch as she seemingly loses her best friend, Lillian, to Helen during the course of the wedding preparations.

While Annie feels justifiably threatened by Helen’s encroachment on her friendship with Lillian, that’s not really what her problem is. Several characters in the film urge Annie to take back control of her life and reclaim the passion that she left behind. That’s what makes it so satisfying when Annie finally takes the advice to heart.

It has Melissa McCarthy’s star-making performance

Melissa McCarthy in Bridesmaids.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Melissa McCarthy was not an unknown when she landed a role in Bridesmaids. She had been getting supporting roles for over a decade when she finally landed a lead role in CBS’ Mike & Molly the year before Bridesmaids came out. But Bridesmaids is the film that made McCarthy a movie star. She is absolutely fearless as Megan, and McCarthy doesn’t shy away from any of the film’s grossest scenes.

McCarthy left such a huge impression on fans and critics alike that she landed her first-ever Oscar nomination for Best Supporting Actress at the Academy Awards. And while McCarthy did not take home an Oscar, Bridesmaids allowed her to headline several of her own comedy movies and big-budget films like this year’s live-action remake of Disney‘s The Little Mermaid. Now that’s a happy ending!

Bridesmaids is now streaming on Netflix.

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Blair Marnell
Blair Marnell has been an entertainment journalist for over 15 years. His bylines have appeared in Wizard Magazine, Geek…
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