Friday, May 23, 2008

Friday Film Night - 27 Dresses

This Friday at The Pink Heart Society editor Trish Wylie talks to us about a film that brightened up her week no end ~ 27 Dresses...

Always A Bridesmaid…Never A Bride…

To me, this is exactly the kind of film The Pink Heart Society’s Friday Film Night is all about. It’s unashamedly a chick-flick/Rom-Com/Girls night out movie and has the kind of ingredients I love most when taking a break mid-book and not needing anything that’s gonna distract me too much from the people who are already taking up so much space inside my head. So what’s it all about?

Well first up there are two things you should know about Jane – the heroine in our film played by Katherine Heigl of Grey’s Anatomy fame; one - she's never says no to her friends and two - she's in love with her boss.

The film starts with her reminiscing about the first wedding she remembers helping at. It was also the first one she’d been to without her mother and as the eldest of two girls she has taken on the role of Mom after her mother’s passing. The bride has a crisis when she rips the back of her dress and our Jane, even at such an early age, ingeniously uses her younger sisters hair ribbon to save the day and is invited to carry the bride’s train as a thank you. Hence a passion for weddings is born.

We then see Jane in a wedding dress. Oh good we think. She’s about to get her own big day. But alas no – she’s the same size as the bride and she’s taking some of the stress out of the wedding morning by wearing it during the last fitting before she changes into her bridesmaid dress and rushes across town to meet the real bride.

But she’s not a bridesmaid at just the one wedding that day – oh no – she’s at TWO. How does she do this? Well by running back and forth between the two weddings, that’s how. But she’s been spotted by our hero – James Marsden of X-Men and Enchanted fame (where incidentally he NEVER gets the girl). As Kevin, he’s a reporter there to cover one of the weddings Jane is at and he can’t help but notice how she keeps looking at her watch and then disappears at regular intervals. When he sees her getting in and out of a cab outside he’s intrigued…

At the end of the night, Jane is at the first wedding getting ready to catch the bouquet which is headed straight for her when she’s tackled by some over-enthusiastic girls and knocked unconscious (having been a bridesmaid three times I can tell you that bouquet toss can be a wrestling match!). When she wakes up, Kevin is leaning over her and helps her up – she’s still dizzy – so he offers to accompany her home. On the way he comments on her two-wedding night and foolishly mentions his opinion about the ludicrousness of the ceremony - this sparks a lively debate about weddings and marriage which leaves Kevin charmed and Jane annoyed; How very refreshing she comments - A man who doesn’t believe in marriage! But she leaves her day planner in the cab and when Kevin discovers she’s been in seven weddings that year he smells a story. A story that might be big enough to get him out of what he calls the "taffeta ghetto."

It’s no surprise to learn Kevin is a cynic when it comes to love and marriage:

Kevin: Love is patient, love is kind, love is slowly going out of your mind…

Which means he’s pretty much the opposite of Jane, who can’t stay away from them and secretly yearns for one of her own while Kevin hates everything about his current assignments and can’t wait to write *real* stories for the paper. He’s attracted to Jane, but as we soon find out Jane is in love with her boss George (the gorgeous Ed Burns who pretty much treats her like she’s invisible) so she’s not interested. However, what Jane doesn’t realize is that Kevin writes under a pseudonym and as Malcolm Doyle he’s her favorite writer in the weddings section of the newspaper. She even collects his articles on weddings and engagements thinking how romantic and lovely they all are and how he must have the same appreciation of the events that she does!

Kevin sends Jane flowers to work - she mistakenly thinks they’re from her boss. So when she’s at an engagement party later that night she plucks up the courage to approach him after some encouragement from her best friend;

Casey: (after Jane turns down a drink offer from George her boss) He asks if you want a drink. You smile and say, 'Vodka soda.' If you already have a drink, you down it. Then there's some flirting, some interoffice sex, an accidental pregnancy, a shot gun wedding, and a life of bliss. How many times do we have to go over this?

Unfortunately Jane’s sister is in town, and when George meets Tess, its love at first sight. Enter Kevin to ask if Jane got his flowers and to return her planner with a jibe about her full-time wedding duties… probably not the best time to ask her for a drink…Especially not when she has to watch George and Tess getting on so well.

When Jane opens her planner in work the next day and sees that Kevin has written his name on every Saturday along with taking up a full page with his phone number she calls him and tells him to leave her alone, but he renews the offer for drinks saying if she ever wanted to hang out with someone who didn't need her to "take them to a fitting or a cake tasting" he would be available.

Jane: Can you please find somebody else to be creepy with?

Frankly he’s so cocky and confident and funny at this point that I’M falling for him.

After accidentally having to bear witness to the man she loves proposing to her sister, Jane finally agrees to meet Kevin at a bar. She explains her being upset as having to do with the anticipation of being dumped on by her sister to work out all of the wedding details and Kevin decides to help her practice saying NO.

Kevin: Jane, can I have $50?

Jane: No.

Kevin: (asks more firmly) Jane, can I have $50?

Jane : No.

Kevin : (gently takes her hand and softens his voice] Jane, I REALLY need $50, can I have the $50?

Jane : (sounding less convinced) ... No?

Kevin : See? That was good! (He then grabs Jane's drink) Jane, can I have your drink?

Jane : Sure. (His look says it all)

Poor Jane does of course get roped into her sister’s wedding plans, whirlwind that they are. And when she discovers that Tess is stealing all the dreams she had for her own wedding, groom included, she just feels worse and worse. To add to it all, who is covering the wedding celebrations but Malcolm Doyle aka Kevin! Jane says he lied to her. Kevin says he didn’t. Tess tells Kevin he’s Jane’s hero…

Jane: I feel like I just found out my favorite love song was written about a sandwich.

One of the funniest scenes for me was when Kevin came to Jane’s apartment insisting he needed to talk to all of the bride's friends and family for the article. While asking questions into a recorder he spies her closet full of Bridesmaids dresses:

Kevin: Wait, what are those?

Jane: Nothing.

Kevin: Are those?

Jane: NO.

Kevin: Are they bridesmaid dresses?

Jane: This is none of your business!

Kevin: Ohhh... good God. What, you kept them all? You have a whole closet full, why?

Jane: I have a lot of friends and I like to keep them.

Kevin: Right. Well, that makes complete sense because they're... beautiful.

Jane: Some of them are not that bad.

Kevin: Not that bad? I'd like to see one of them thats not that bad.

This leads to a kind of impromptu fashion show that brought back entirely too many memories for me and the good friend I’d brought with me to see the film. We’re both terminal bridesmaid’s and we know only too well the angst involved. But oh-my did we feel better after seeing some of Jane’s dresses:

Kevin: (When Jane pulls out a loud-looking Gone With The Wind dress) What is that?

Jane: Theme wedding!

Kevin: What was the theme? Humiliation?

It really is a very funny scene. And when Kevin, who has been surreptitiously photographing her in each and every one counts the photos and discovers - guess how many? He asks her why she does it. It’s a turning point. We category romance readers love them don’t we?

Kevin: You'd rather focus on other people's Kodak moments than make memories of your own!

This then leads us to Kevin attempting to postpone the story he has pre-sold to his editor while his friendship with Jane blossoms. We find out Kevin has his own reasons for being so cynical (I’m in love by now) – he discovers Jane is in love with George (and confronts her in a scene you just KNOW ups the tension between them) and then they end up stranded in the middle of nowhere when Jane loses control of her car mid-argument. So they do what all sensible people do and end up in a bar having a few drinks while Jane drowns her sorrows. She asks him about a specific wedding that he had written about where the ceremony was held on the anniversary of the parents' deaths and the brother was flown in from Afghanistan for it. Kevin claims he doesn't remember it and Jane says:

Jane: I think you should just admit that you're a big softy. That this whole cynical thing is just an act so that you can seem wounded, and mysterious, and sexy.
Kevin: Woah, woah, woah. What was the last one?
Jane: What?
Kevin: Did you say sexy?
Jane: What?
Kevin: Do you think I'm sexy?
Jane: No.
Kevin: Its OK if you do.
Jane: I don't.

What he does admit is that his favorite part of weddings is watching the groom's face while the bride comes down the aisle, which Jane had earlier recounted to George as her favorite part… sigh… They end up so drunk they’re singing on the bar with the rest of the patrons cheering them on and then, at the end of the song, when Kevin turns to help Jane off of the bar he admits that he cried like a baby at the wedding she mentioned and they kiss. Double sigh. And it leads to a night together in her car:

Jane: I never do anything like this.

Kevin: I know.

Jane: You do?

Kevin: Yes, you kept repeating that over and over last night - I never do anything like this... I *never* do anything like this... I never do *anything* like this...

Of course it’s not gonna end while they’re happy is it? Kevin’s article on Jane is published early without his knowledge, she feels hurt, betrayed and humiliated – she slaps him. And then she goes on to take how she feels out on the rest of the world, long over-due yes – but it leaves her feeling worse than before.

Jane's Aunt: Must be so hard to watch your younger sister get married before you.
Jane: Yes. Then I remember that I still get to have hot hate sex with random strangers and I feel SO much better!

I really did love this film. I loved that there was plenty there to keep the scenes rolling on, I loved that there was character development in both the hero and heroine, I absolutely LOVED the humor. And yes, it’s already on my Amazon wishlist for when it comes out on DVD here in the UK. It’ll go right on my keeper shelf for times when I need a pick me up or when the girls come round for a night in.

And for all those reasons and the general yumminess that was James Marsden in this film I give it a warm and fuzzy rating of nine out of ten. It’s my kind of romantic comedy!

I’m even leaving you with a trailer so you can see for yourself…

H's & K's Trish

Trish has two books out this month - the first of which is her Presents release in the USA & Canada Her Bedroom Surrender - a favorite of Trish's that was previously released as Breathless! And that Trish is chuffed to bits has finaled in the Short Contemporary Category of The Booksellers Best Award!

To second is of course Gabe's book Claimed By The Billionaire Bad Boy which is out in Modern Heat in the UK and Ireland.

To find out more you can visit her Website or Her Blog


  1. Dammit, girl, you know this is SO not fair when I'm dvd player-less for a MONTH!

    Hating U....

    Great blog, btw. ;-)

  2. Yes, that's a VERY good post because I want to see it and I've actually already seen that movie and didn't like it. vbg

    Jane's a bit wet, isn't she?!?!? But I do like the idea of getting your friends to wear the dresses they put you in. :)

  3. Right that settles it, I'm dragging my 15 year old son to this one so he can squirm and make snide comments about the dresses and I can sigh over James Marsden and Ed Burns.

    And can I just say, I've never ever been a bridesmaid, which is now making me wonder what's wrong with me!


  4. This was my last movie pre-baby :) I loved it, completely. Complete mental break from all things stressful

  5. Yes, okay, I give you James Marsden is a good idea.