Put your biggest pair of knickers on in solidarity and celebration – Bridget Jones is back. Everyone’s favourite spinster, the queen of cringe, has returned after 14 years, and boy oh boy, was she missed.
After 2016’s long-awaited sequels such as Zoolander 2 and Absolutely Fabulous: The Movie, I was really worried about seeing Bridget Jones’s Baby. In my opinion, Zoolander 2 was an entirely unnecessary and overdone addition to a unique and hilarious story, and I chose not to see Ab Fab: The Movie, due to the fear it would also disappoint me, and blemish the irreplaceable television series that preceded it.
With Bridget Jones’s Baby however, it was my curiosity and ardent love for Colin Firth that pushed me to give it a try.
From the trailer alone, we learn that a lot has happened since the second Bridget Jones film, The Edge of Reason: Bridget (Renée Zellweger) has climbed up the television journalism ladder and is now a ‘Hard News’ programme producer; she and haughty but gorgeous Mark Darcy (Colin Firth) are no longer together; and she finds herself pregnant and not knowing who the father is – her ex, Mark, or the new man in her life, the dreamy and American Jack (Patrick Dempsey).
The signature wit and droll introduced in the first film, are fortunately still present in the third. Bridget’s delightfully awkward moments throughout the film made me clutch the cinema chair arm rests and wince through my laughter. Her trademark teetering walk in high heels and a short skirt has become a clumsy pregnant waddle, and her once-dramatic half-nude run through the snow is long gone, as she wanders London, heavily pregnant in daggy overalls; how the times have changed.
It is fascinating to see how Bridget has evolved in this modern addition. Her diary has become the Notes section of an iPad, she knows the Gangnam Style dance, she can rap, she knows what Instagram and Tinder are – even though she refuses to use them herself. Realistically, she is a 43-year-old employee in a business that favours the young, fast, and hungry, and she fights to keep relevant and afloat.
The plot itself I personally found a bit predictable (maybe I’ve seen one too many rom-coms?), but wholly enjoyable nonetheless. Patrick Dempsey’s Jack was a charming character, and the semi-macho competitive moments between he and Mark as they compete for Bridget (and the baby) are so amusing and endearing. Similarly to the two films prior, Bridget is all at once an independent mess, and a hopeless romantic. The film’s ending was heartwarming and a wonderful way to wrap up the Bridget Jones film series.
However, as the credits rolled, I wondered, was the 14-year-long wait worth it? Was this third film really necessary? Honestly, I’m still undecided. It was a thoroughly enjoyable ride, but the film left Bridget with only a bit more closure than she had at the end of the second film. Will it ever top the original Bridget Jones’s Diary? Doubtful. Bad boy Daniel Cleaver (Hugh Grant) from the previous two films is absent, and his wickedly inappropriate, sickly charm, and entertainment are truly missed.
Nonetheless, a very funny and sweet movie with a few little twists along the way you may not see coming. Bonus points for the quote from Bridget’s batty mother: “Support of single mothers, and the majority of homosexuals and Italians.”
Reviewed by Eleanor Danenberg.