BRIDGET JONES’S BABY
FILM REVIEW - BRIDGET JONES'S BABY
Running Length: 123 minutes
Release Date: 16th September 2016
Directed by: Sharon Maguire
Cast: Renée Zellweger, Colin Firth, Patrick Dempsey, Jim Broadbent
Screenplay by: Helen Fielding, Dan Mazer, Emma Thompson
Director of Cinematography: Andrew Dunne
A light-hearted romantic comedy that reinforces the notion that all a woman really needs is a man.
12 years after Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason and Renée Zellweger is back as the delightfully incompetent singleton. Bridget Jones’s Diary director Sharon Maguire also returns, as does the badly Photoshopped poster and the most insufferable group of friends outside of Made in Chelsea.
As movie number 3 begins, Bridget’s professional career is in rude health and she’s come to terms with being over 40 and single. But fate steps in. After two marathon bouts of rumpy pumpy with perennial ex Mark Darcy (Colin Firth) and sexy mathematician Jack Quant (Patrick “Dr. McDreamy” Dempsey), Bridget finds herself unexpectedly pregnant and unsure of who exactly the baby daddy is. Cue many hilarious misunderstandings and pratfalls in mud.
Bridget Jones’s Baby is about as surprising as Monday following Sunday. The script (co-written by Emma Thompson) follows the same arc with the same beats in the same places as its predecessors (if it ain’t broke…). Zellweger has proved that she can do a good full English and falls back into the role with the ease of slipping into a comfortable onesie. Hugh Grant has opted out of this reunion, and his character gets an inauspicious off-screen death within the first 10 minutes.
Dempsey’s alternative love rival lacks Grant’s narcissism and sarcastic edge, and is a little too perfect to be interesting. Firth is obviously wasted in this, but to his credit he seems happy enough to slum it one more time for the fans. In fairness, his character displays some evidence of emotional development, and Mark Darcy (so vapid… so joyless… so sexy!) doesn’t come off as such an insufferable stiff this time.
But Bridget Jones’ Baby sells a very outdated message, and there’s a nasty chauvinistic filling in this cake. As the movie races towards its climax – and Bridget races toward the maternity unit – her path is blocked by a Women’s Rights march (Bah, pesky feminists!). Not to worry though; both Darcy and Quant are on hand to take Bridget up in their manly arms and carry her to the delivery room. YEAH! GIRL POWER!!! It’s probably best not to read into this metaphor too much or your head will explode.
Look, Bridget Jones’ Baby is no better or worse as either of the preceding movies. Odds are that if you pay to see this you’ll know exactly what to expect. And you probably won’t be disappointed. It’s a light-hearted romantic comedy that reinforces the notion that all a woman really needs is a man. Ideally, two of them.