Life of the Party - 4/5
Surprisingly an excellent film. While Melissa McCarthy has had more hits than misses, there's always scepticism of what you are going to get. Life of the Party could have been a colossal cringe-worthy failure like 'Identity Thief' or cleverly done like 'Spy.' Fortunately we have a very good production. McCarthy worked on the script with her husband Ben Falcone and they clearly have the knack for writing good content. Unlike her other films, while she is still the centre of the comedic attention, this film has her share the comedic moments with almost every cast member. Maya Rudolph plays McCarthy's best friend, and steals every scene she is in with her crazy antics and over the top delivery. The film also has small parts played by Aussie royalty Jackie Weaver and Modern Family's Julie Bowen - who both have very quirky and humorous moments. Humour aside, the message this movie has is one that is heartwarming. The journey of a female character, who feels downtrodden only to discover her self-worth is a trope explored in films before. Some have succeeded in being empowering like 'Legally Blonde,' some have been a bit cringe-worthy like 'The House Bunny' and some have been a platform to show off privilege like 'Eat, Pray, Love.' Most of the time the protagonists in these films have been women that match the Hollywood standard of beauty. It was refreshing to see this change in Life of the Party. Boasting strong themes of motherhood and sisterhood, this film leaves left me laughing hysterically at certain moments, and yet rooting for the characters and applauding them for the support they give one another. I strongly recommend you give this film a go. You are bound to have a blast.