Female friendships are a very treasured thing, so when women find those special friends who understand them, who they can pick right up with no matter how long it’s been, and who they can fight with because it comes from a place of love, they hold onto those relationships very tight. Because they are the ones worth fighting for.

Taking a decidedly more comedic approach to these ideas is Netflix’s Wine Country, an ensemble comedy starring Amy Poehler (who also makes her directorial debut here). She is joined by comedy greats Rachel Dratch, Ana Gasteyer, Maya Rudolph, Paula Pell, and Tina Fey. Wine Country spins the yarn of a group of women who have been friends for the last 25 years coming together to celebrate the 50th birthday of one of their own (Dratch). As the women make their way through wine country, we watch these years-long friendships deal with new pressures, joys, and bonding experiences — all fueled by the power of a good Chardonnay. When you’re done watching Wine Country, these seven hilarious movies make for a good chaser. 

1. ‘Bridesmaids’ (2011)


An instant classic, Paul Feig’s Bridesmaids was a paradigm-shifting comedy. Starring Melissa McCarthy (who earned a Best Supporting Actress Oscar nom because of her comedic performance), Kristen Wiig, Maya Rudolph, and Rose Byrne, Bridesmaids tells the story of what happens when a group of women brought together for a wedding stop being polite and start getting real. Okay, okay, I stole that last part from MTV’s The Real World, but honestly, this movie is so resonant and honest about the nuances of adult female friendships — both new and old — and how those relationships can be hilariously and poignantly tested in the planning of a stressful wedding. You’ll laugh until you cry and it will be worth every second.

2. ‘Bachelorette’ (2012)


Taking a more sardonic approach to the idea of everything that can go sideways in a bridal party, Bachelorette stars Kirsten Dunst, Lizzy Caplan, Isla Fisher, and Rebel Wilson. Three friends (Dunst, Caplan, and Fisher) come together as bridesmaids for their high school pal (Wilson), who they were not very nice to when they were all teenagers.

On the weekend of the wedding, old wounds are exposed between the women and some truly royal screw-ups go down. The overlooked and underrated Bachelorette exposes the ways in which even the closest, oldest friendships need to evolve (seriously, the passive-aggressiveness, albeit used for comedic effect, in this movie is off the charts) if they’re worth saving.

3. ‘Fun Mom Dinner’ (2017)


In Fun Mom Dinner, Katie Aselton, Toni Collette, Molly Shannon, and Bridget Everett play four moms looking to cut loose for just one night while their husbands watch the kids — a truly relatable premise, even if you don’t have kids.

Aselton and Collette play longtime friends who decide to meet up with two other moms from their kids’ school (Shannon and Everett) for what they think will be a casual night out. Instead, the moms decide to turn up, which of course takes the women in some unexpected directions. Fun Mom Dinner gets painfully, hilariously, honest about the difficulty of making good friends as you get older and get settled in your life. This comedy understands that, whether you’re a new friend or an old one, finding your perfect friend group is a special thing.

4. ‘Ghostbusters’ (2016)


The 2016 Ghostbusters reboot isn’t your traditional female ensemble comedy in the sense that the circumstances a group of friends find themselves in is something like a bachelorette party, a fun night out, or a group trip. The circumstances that bring Kristen Wiig, Melissa McCarthy, Kate McKinnon, and Leslie Jones together are literally world-ending, as they struggle to stop supernatural forces from pushing into our reality and leaving a nasty trail of slime in their wake.

What makes Ghostbusters such a solid and funny female ensemble comedy isn’t just its callbacks and Easter Eggs to the 1984 classic. It allows four grown women to serve as the film’s leads and allows audiences to connect to them through their work as they help one another to do the unthinkable. Friendships are built and tested in a number of unusual ways, so why wouldn’t fighting ghosts be one of them?

5. ‘9 To 5’ (1980)


This Dolly Parton-Jane Fonda-Lily Tomlin joint is a classic comedy. Seriously, if you haven’t seen it yet you gotta fix that.

Come for the catchy AF, toe-tapping titular Dolly Parton song, stay for the hilarious and clever hijinks the trio of starts get themselves in and out of as they take on their misogynistic, predatory boss (Dabney Coleman) in a comedy that only gets better — and more relevant — with age. 9 to 5 was all about the concept of a “work wife” before it was ever a thing, showing just how fruitful and healthy workplace friendships among women can be, especially when it comes to giving much-needed protection against shi**y male colleagues and bosses.  

6. ‘Girls Trip’ (2017)


Even the closest of friends need to take time to get away from their hectic lives and meaningfully reconnect. Girls Trip certainly accomplishes that as we watch four friends who’ve known each other since college — played by Regina Hall, Queen Latifah, Jada Pinkett Smith, and scene-stealer Tiffany Haddish — go on a weekend trip to New Orleans for the Essence Music Festival. The trip quickly exposes all the ways in which each of their personal lives is going through a crisis while showing how the best way to solve these problems is amongst the friends and women that know you best.  

7. ‘Mean Girls’ (2003)


One of the internet’s favorite movies, Mean Girls is absolutely fetch. It is a perfect female ensemble comedy.

Not only does it Wine Country’s Tina Fey star in the comedy (which she also wrote), it also features Amy Poehler in a meme-worthy role as Regina George’s over-bearing mom desperate to be seen as “just one of the girls.” Mean Girls excels at unpacking and tearing down the internalized misogyny and superficial pressures teenage girls put on each other as they search for friends who get them. Being a teenager is rough as hell, but Mean Girls nails the trial-and-error process of figuring out who your real friends are.

Wine Country is available to stream now on Netflix.

  • Editorial