Everyone Is Terrible and Other Wedding Stories

Yesterday after work, I stopped at the post office to mail a couple of packages. Then I went home to make dinner, wash the dishes, scoop cat shit, and fold laundry. I’m aware that this is how a normal adult lives, but it was so much compared to how I normally come home from work (scream at fellow motorists, lock front door behind me and stare at a screen for several hours) that I felt remarkably responsible.

I mean, obviously I still stared at a screen for some period of time because this is 2013 and what the what else am I supposed to do, plow a field? Pffffft. I watched Bachelorette, something I’d been wanting to see and was excited to find on Netflix Instant (do people still call it Netflix Instant, or is it Netflix Streaming, or did enough people get rid of the discs that it’s just Netflix now?). I was interested in it because a) Lizzy Caplan, b) Rebel Wilson and c) Adam Scott, who I’m not sexually attracted to but he’s Ben Wyatt so I’m pretty much into his general presence. If I were going to be sexually attracted to anyone in Bachelorette it would be Lizzy Caplan, although not really because ew vaginas and also I don’t think I could sleep with anyone who’s that much thinner than I am. I need to feel dainty when I’m naked. Sorry.

If you’re also interested in Bachelorette, please consider the following to be a public service announcement:

It sucks.

Not long ago, I wrote something about how I can’t stand books in which the protagonist is purposefully unlikable, meaning that the author created the character to be terrible, and the publisher expects readers to…sympathize with? enjoy knowing? care at all about what happens to a total piece of shit? It’s a lazy way to write, in my opinion, and speaks less about the work itself and more about a writer/industry that’s trying to glorify what’s awful in them/itself rather than dissect the awfulness for a reason.

I feel the same way about movies, which is why I hated Bachelorette. Simply, everyone in it is an asshole.

Now, not all assholes are bad. Some assholes are charming, some have redeeming qualities, and every story needs a villain. But when every single character is a reprehensible fuck who just sort of stumbles through the scenery with no legitimate motive or empathy or actual human qualities, then the movie (or book, or song, or whatever) has taken any good assholes and just wrung the shit right out of them.

The premise is this: three awful girls get asked to be bridesmaids by their “friend” from high school, and I say “friend” because no one actually seems to like her. Instead, they all mock her weight, call her “Pigface,” and wonder to one another how she could have possibly managed to find a husband at all, let alone one who is good-looking and rich. How the bride-to-be doesn’t see her “friends” as total cunts is a puzzler, although I guess I understand since the filmmakers made sure to portray the fat girl as sweet but simple. Because how on earth could a fat person have any emotional or intellectual complexity, amirite?

While in town for the bachelorette party and wedding, the three “friends” insult the bride, get super coked up, rip and stain the wedding dress and then run all over town like a bunch of jackasses trying to fix it, not because they realize that what they’ve done is wrong, but because they don’t really want to get yelled at again. And any depth these women could possibly possess is practically invisible due to the following reasons:

  1. Kirsten Dunst’s inscrutable expression at any point in the film other than the scene with the cocaine.
  2. The shrill and combative nature of their friendship and relationships with others, who, by the way, seem to cringe whenever one of these bitches enters a room and I’m not entirely sure that’s on purpose.
  3. They’re just…mean. And stupid. And shallow. And nothing they do is likable or realistic and I’m honestly baffled that a woman wrote and directed this shitshow.

Oh please, was this intended to portray women as complex creatures who are – surprise! – just as boorish and base as men are supposed to be? The Hairpin says that Leslye Headland didn’t want to be thought of as female at all, and that her characters are flawed but lifelike, and the overall message is that not everything works out in the end.

Ugh, jerkoff motion. I’m not asking for everything to work out in the end, okay? If I was, I’d watch something with Katherine Heigl and then go shoot myself in the face. I’m not saying that women can’t sleep around, do drugs, or be bitchy, either, because ahem do you know me at all. What I am saying is that none of these characters were given any credibility as people whatsoever, and that’s a failure on the part of the filmmaker. Regan is the hateful bulimic, Gena is the drug-addled witch, and Katie is the idiotic basketcase who attempts suicide for attention.

The only redemption they’re offered involves Regan forcing Katie to vomit up a bunch of pills (wetting her fingers beforehand because that’s how she makes herself throw up) while being cruel to everyone else, Katie sleeping with a guy who actually likes her for a change just after she admits she sleeps with guys to get them to like her, and Gena gets back together with her high school sweetheart because she realizes that he’s the answer and everything she’s done with her life in the interim has been bad. These moments are meant to be hopeful but instead are reminders that we’re dealing with horrible women, and you know, I don’t really think that was intentional. Oh, and there are a few pop culture references thrown in, too, which are less about being relevant and more about letting everyone know that whoever wrote it watched Fast Times at Ridgemont High once.

What a fucking waste of actors. I’d rather read Bret Easton Ellis. He’s an overrated asshole, too, but at least he sometimes admits to it.

About erineph

I'm Erin. I have tattoos and more than one cat. I am an office drone, a music writer, and an erstwhile bartender. I am a cook in the bedroom and a whore in the kitchen. Things I enjoy include but are not limited to zombies, burritos, Cthulhu, Kurt Vonnegut, Keith Richards, accordions, perfumery, and wearing fat pants in the privacy of my own home.
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