Girls Trip is a hilarious movie that will definitely make you laugh, but there are more reasons its success is significant. It's the first major film starring four Black women since 1995's Waiting to Exhale. But as its opening weekend earnings indicate, audiences are eager to see more women of color on the big screen.
Unsurprisingly, plenty of Twitter users and media outlets have been quick to compare Girls Trip's success with the earnings of Rough Night, which was released in June, as well as with 2011's Bridesmaids and 2009's The Hangover. But comparing Girls Trip to these other films — the latter two of which both include uncomfortable homophobic jokes — does it a disservice.
Yes, all four movies are comedies starring four protagonists, but in reality, they couldn't be more different. We should celebrate Girls Trip for its own success, and for the success of a movie led by four awesome Black women.
ABC News, for instance, wrote that Rough Night and Girls Trip are "essentially the same film." That's more than a bit of a stretch — Rough Night is about a bachelorette party trip, while the Girls Trip characters are single. Yes, both movies feature groups of college friends who haven't seen each other in years, but that hardly makes them the same movie. (ABC News also calls both movies "cousins of The Hangover franchise," which is just adding insult to injury.)
Girls Trip's opening weekend earnings are a huge deal. Hopefully, its success will show studios that they can bank on female-led movies to succeed — and that having people of color on screen is so important. That's what we should focus on with the box office news; there's no reason to bring Rough Night into it.
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