Part of me wants to be able to say that The First Wives Club is a silly, stupid movie that is really just brain candy – but I can’t. I love this movie; I think it is a genuinely good movie with entertaining and appealing comedy that does not get stale. I will admit that The First Wives Club probably plays better to women, but I am a woman so there’s no problem there.
The First Wives Club is about three women – Brenda, Elise & Annie – all three of whom have been left by their first husbands. They were close in college but let post-college life help grow them apart until their other college friend Cynthia commits suicide on the day that her recently ex-husband gets remarried. The tragedy brings the three women back into each others lives and as they discover that their marital situations are so similar they decide to band together and form the first wives club and be the wives that just won’t take being left standing while their husbands chase their more youthful replacement. Together they dig out the dirt on their exes and make the men rue the day they traded in their first wives.
The reason The First Wives Club works as well as it does is the three lead actresses that helm it – Goldie Hawn, Bette Midler & Diane Keaton. These women are not only phenomenal actresses in their own right but they have a divine chemistry together that really makes their friendship genuine and complete. Goldie is gloriously funny as Elise the actress obsessed with youth and delivers some of my favorite lines in the film; Bette is divine as Brenda the Jewish mother who just wants her son to be happy but tries not to meddle too much; Diane is perfect the compulsive and quirky Annie who is newly adjusting to the news that her college age daughter is a lesbian.
However, the supporting cast in this movie is just as beautifully cast as the main roles you have Maggie Smith, Victor Garber, Marcia Gay Harden, Rob Reiner and more. Everywhere you turn there are actors and entertainment personalities that you see all over television and film. When this movie was put together they spared no chance to put a good recognizable actor in the right role.
I do think that The First Wives Club is a film that can be enjoyed by almost anyone. I also highly recommend it for any girls night in.
Director: Hugh Wilson
Writer: Robert Harling
Brenda Cushman: Bette Midler
Elise Elliot: Goldie Hawn
Annie Paradis: Diane Keaton
Gunilla Garson Goldberg: Maggie Smith
Morton Cushman: Dan Hedaya
Shelly Stewart: Sarah Jessica Parker
Cynthia Swann Griffin: Stockard Channing
Bill Atchison: Victor Garber
Aaron Paradis: Stephen Collins
Phoebe: Elizabeth Berkley
Dr. Rosen: Marcia Gay Harden
Duarto Feliz: Bronson Pinchot
Brett Artounian: Timothy Olyphant
Brenda: My Morty becomes this big shot on T.V... He was selling electronics, right? On our 20th wedding anniversary it hits midlife crisis major. He starts working out, he, he grows a moustache, he gets an earring. I said, "Morty, Morty, what are you? A pirate? what's next? A parrot?" And all of a sudden I'm a big drag. I'm holding him back because I won't go rollerblading.