Almost a decade ago, Bridesmaids – written by Kristen Wiig and Annie Mumolo – was released, which made more than $288 million worldwide, and earned Wiig and Mumolo an Academy Award nomination for Best Original Screenplay. Now, Wiig and Mumolo have reunited for their next film as both writers and stars with Barb and Star Go to Vista Del Mar, which is currently the most popular movie on Prime Video.
In Barb and Star Go to Vista Del Mar, Kristen Wiig plays Star and Annie Mumolo is Barb, two best friends who leave their Midwestern town and go on vacation together for the first time in Vista Del Mar, Florida. The two women look like they’re stuck in the early 80s, with matching haircuts, and loud clothing choices. They’re certainly weird, as one trailer shows them making hot dog soup for their “talking club,” but because it’s Wiig and Mumolo, they’re also charming and hilarious. But of course, this vacation sets Barb and Star on an adventure unlike they’ve ever experienced before, full of love and danger.
In addition to Kristen Wiig and Annie Mumolo, Barb and Star Go to Vista Del Mar also stars Fifty Shades of Grey’s Jamie Dornan, Happy Endings’ Damon Wayans Jr., and cameos from The Goldbergs’ Wendi McLendon-Covey, Saturday Night Live’s Vanessa Bayer, and The Office’s Phyllis Smith. Barb and Star Go to Vista Del Mar is directed by Josh Greenbaum, who has previously directed episodes of New Girl and Fresh Off The Boat, and is produced by Gloria Sanchez Productions, a subsidiary of Will Ferrell and Adam McKay’s Gary Sanchez Productions. Previously, Gloria Sanchez Productions has put out such films as Booksmart, Hustlers, and last year’s Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga.
Barb and Star Go to Vista Del Mar came out on February 12th and Kristen Wiig and Annie Mumolo’s latest comedy is already getting strong reviews. The film holds a 83% on Rotten Tomatoes’ Tomatometer, with a 77% audience score. On Metacritic, the movie currently has a favorable 68. Ben Travis of Empire said Barb and Star Go to Vista Del Mar “has future cult favourite written all over it.” Matt Singer of Screen Crushsaid “Comedy fans will quote this movie for decades.”
But not everyone is on the same wavelength with Barb and Star Go to Vista Del Mar. Jessica Kiang of Rolling Stone calls it a “purposely messy, garish and disposable comedy,” while David Robb of Slant Magazine says the film never feels like more than a half-formed in-joke between close friends.” But it seems like if you’re a fan of strange, absurdist humor and writing of Kristen Wiig and Annie Mumolo, Barb and Star Go to Vista Del Mar might be for you.
Since Bridesmaids, Kristen Wiig has worked on a unique mixture of films. While she’s been a part of comedies like 2016’s Ghostbusters and 2013’s Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues, she’s actually focused on more films that combine drama and comedy. She starred with her Saturday Night Live castmate Bill Hader in 2014’s The Skeleton Twins, 2015’s The Diary of a Teenage Girl, and 2019’s Where’d You Go, Bernadette.
Kristen Wiig has also done voice work for some major projects over the last decade. Wiig’s voice appeared in 2013’s Her, while she also played Agent Lucy Wilde in Despicable Me 2 and Despicable Me 3, and also voiced Ruffnut Thorston in How to Train Your Dragon 2 and How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World. She’s also appeared on some impressive television comedies, including Arrested Development, Netflix’s Wet Hot American Summer series, and The Last Man on Earth.
But some of Kristen Wiig’s most interesting work over the last decade has been in films one might not expect to see her in. Wiig appeared in 2015’s The Martian, gave a haunting performance in Darren Aronofsky’s divisive 2017 film mother!, and most recently appeared as Cheetah in last year’s Wonder Woman 1984. But Barb and Star Go to Vista Del Mar seems like Wiig’s wildest and most over-the-top comedy since even before Bridesmaids.
But right now, we could all use a weird comedy like Barb and Star Go to Vista Del Mar. The film has already been compared to other cult favorites like Hot Rod and MacGruber, and Kristen Wiig and Annie Mumolo have proven how hilarious they can be when put together in Bridesmaids. Barb and Star Go to Vista Del Mar looks like one of the strangest comedies in recent year, and with the rave reviews it’s getting, it definitely seems worth a rental. Barb and Star Go to Vista Del Mar is currently available to stream on Prime Video, or to rent on VOD services.