Kristen Wiig leads the cast as Annie, a maid of honor whose life unravels as she leads her best friend, Lillian (Maya Rudolph), and a group of colorful bridesmaids (Rose Byrne, Melissa McCarthy, Wendi McLendon-Covey and Ellie Kemper) on a wild ride down the road to matrimony.Annie's life is a mess. But when she finds out her lifetime best friend is engaged, she simply must serve as Lillian's maid of honor. Though lovelorn and broke, Annie bluffs her way through the expensive and bizarre rituals. With one chance to get it perfect, she'll show Lillian and her bridesmaids just how far you'll go for someone you love.
A sweet and slap-happy mix of indie coming-of-age drama and Judd Apatows scatological but heartfelt manchild comedies, Greg Mottolas Adventureland is a winning look at the pleasures and frustrations of dead-end jobs and teenage kicks as viewed through a filter of mid-80s pop culture. The underutilized and always watchable Jesse Eisenberg (The Squid and the Whale) is a sheltered, introspective New York college grad who discovers that his parents' financial woes will not only quash his dream of a summer in Europe (to enjoy its more "sexually permissive" nations) but require a move to Pittsburgh, where he lands a job at a dilapidated amusement park. There, hes thrown in with a motley crew of eccentrics, small-town types and a few genuine free spirits, most notably co-worker Em (Kristen Stewart), whose complicated past proves irresistible to his repressed psyche. Mottola, who directed Superbad, and once worked in a similar park as a teen, doesnt shy from the crude laughs that make Apatows features so popular, but he tempers it with a wistful tone and layered characters that hew closer to his earliest work, The Daytrippers. Though ill-matched at first, Eisenberg and Stewart make a likable on-screen couple, and theyre well-supported by a terrific cast that includes such die-hard scene-stealers as Bill Hader and Kristen Wiig as the parks offbeat owners, Martin Starr as a Russian lit aficionado, and Ryan Reynolds as a former town tamer, now reduced to working as the parks handyman. A soundtrack performed by underground faves Yo La Tengo and filled with a smart mix of hip cuts (Hüsker Dü, the New York Dolls, the Replacements) and period faves (Falcos "Rock Me Amadeus") underscores the films blend of tentative emotions and broad laughs. -- Paul Gaita
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