Kristen Wiig has this role down pat. The middle-aged woman, who is barely hanging on as the life she knows begins to unravel and slip away, and she has to hit rock bottom to learn to fly high again. We saw it in 2010’s Bridesmaids, and now, we see it here again in Girl Most Likely.
Luckily for us, Wiig can pull this off with the virtuous aplomb that makes us both laugh (and laugh hard) at her while also feel sorry for her.
In Girl Most Likely, we meet Imogene, a one-time rising star in the New York Playwright circuit, who developed writers block and instead of living up to her promising career, latched on to the elite Literati and found “love” with a wealthy investor. Of course, the investor breaks up with her and her friends all prove fickle. Imogene, after a pathetic suicide attempt, is forced to move back to New Jersey to stay with her gambling-addicted mother (Annette Benning).
Once home, Imogene reconnects with her socially inept brother, Ralph (Christopher Fitzgerald), meets her mother’s secret agent boyfriend George Bousche (Matt Dillon) and is forced to sleep in the living room because her bedroom is now rented out to a casino singer, Lee (Darren Criss). And, as before, Wiig’s Imogene falls hard and then we, the audience, get the joy of watching her make a stunning life comeback.
Michelle Morgan’s script has various levels of depth, which helps separate this from the other Wiig vehicle, and the character of Ralph, and Fitzgerald’s performance, are sublime and give weight to a film that could have easily just fluttered along as a Bridesmaids clone.
The true comedy of Girl Most Likely comes from Matt Dillon’s “The Bousche.” He’s supposedly a CIA agent on an important mission (In Ocean City, New Jersey), who happens to drink coffee from a mug with the letters “C.I.A” printed on the side, eats a ton of cheese and mayo sandwiches, and who lives by the samurai code. Dillon shines brightly in this role, as nearly every line out of his mouth is more ludicrous than the last, and all of them are hilarious.
I found myself laughing at this film more and more due to Fitzgerald and Dillon. By the end, I felt that this is the funniest movie that I’ve seen this summer. Girl Most Likely isn’t the best movie of the year, nor will it be remembered this time come Labor Day, but the laughs are real and genuine, and they come from actors who do their job incredibly well.
Hopefully, this is the last time that Kristen Wiig straps on this type of character (thankfully, she has already nixed the Bridesmaids sequel), because she is a very talented comedic actress, and she needs to spread her wings more and stop playing the same character over and over. Girl Most Likely is funny, but not because of her, and for that she gets a pass. This time.
Girl Most Likely is rated PG-13 and was released on July 19, 2013.