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8/17/12

Why you should see "Bachelorette" and relish Andrew Rannells in a Silver Speedo


A little theater-cinema crossover to start off your TGIF feels? I can help with that.

I would recognize that
stripper from anywhere.
My Internet patrolling came across the Sundance Film Festival Submission, Bachelorette. Based on Leslye Hedlund's Off-Broadway play with the same name that debuted at Playwright Horizons, this movie is an extension of that racy female-driven comedy genre that is bound to become a trend thanks to the success of Bridesmaids.

With a limited release next month (even though it is available on iTunes and "On Demand," whatever that means), allow me to explain why this caught my attention and is worthy of a queue add or an $11 movie ticket. Thoughts? Report to the dance floor please!

-- My only other experience with Headland's work was Assistance, the simple, minimal comedy/drama that ran this past Spring. That was great, if a little too subdued for its own good. This? The EXACT opposite...like, so opposite, I would have had no idea it came from the same writer. How does the same writer conceive the pre-wedding hijinx plot of this film - including, but not limited to, cocaine-snorting, booze, sex and strip clubs - and relate it to the "I am an assistant and I am overworked" mantra of Assistance? Hedlund has range y'all...

-- And while we are talking about Assistance, Sue Jean Kim, who had a part in that show, is featured as a wedding planner in Bachelorette. It is a pretty uneventful role, but hey...well...yeah, I guess that was only an observation.

-- The movie may touch on some heavier drama, but overall, it is a pretty easy watch and moves at a good pace for almost 90 minutes (same length as Assistance). More kudos to Headland, who knows how to build character and nuance without needing all the time in the world.

-- The actual cast is likeable, if not exactly revolutionary. The original off-Broadway cast had NRNW favorite Celia Keenan-Bolger, but this one had a whole ensemble of names. Between the fantastic Melancholia and this film, Kirsten Dunst is great when she decides to act. Isla Fisher and Lizzy Caplan - which by the way, Caplan will always be Janice from Mean Girls to me - have their funny moments, especially when their antics are amped up and they commit to the bonkers. Adam Scott - Ben in Parks and Recreation, one of my favorite characters (although really, I love most of the characters on that show) - gets a hilarious monologue about sex near the end of the movie. The best part is, just when you think it is about to end, it just keeps going on and on and on. James Marsden and Rebel Wilson are...there? I like both of them as actors even if they are relevantly non-descript here.

-- You know who is also in "Bachelorette?" Andrew "I Believe" Rannells TEARING IT UP. He plays a proto kind-of gay (unconfirmed, but highly suggested) co-worker of Fisher. His three scenes total less then four minutes of screen time, two of which he just stands there and smiles, laughs or says a witty line. It is hilarious how my eyes just gravitate towards him when he is in the frame though - that bitch just makes the camera come to him. Like a boss. Flawless human-being, that Andrew...

-- He strips, you guys...ANDREW RANNELLS STRIPS. About 19 minutes, 45 seconds into the film - not like I was keeping track or anything - he comes into the bridal suite, filled with women, dressed like a cop. The tear-away clothes come off to reveal Rannells in a silver lame speedo as he gets all sexy-like...yelling stripper stuffs, giving face for days and grinding up on Wilson's character. I just can't...it was perfection. Don't believe me? I have proof...


Critiquing a man's striptease and subsequent dancing is...well, silly really (pfft, like that is going to stop me). I will say that Rannells strikes the perfect balance between vamping for the camera and being in on the joke to playing the scene straight with his serious face and body gyrations. Hey, if I could twerq it like Rannells, I'd get in the zone too. Or his zone, whichever happens first...

Photo Credit: Bachelorette by Leslye Headland
Screengrab Credit: Bachelorette by Leslye Headland via NY-Renaissance-Man

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