By Charlotte Aimée Hulme
I recently went to see the new Bridget Jones film Bridget Jones’ Baby at the cinema. I feel like I can speak on behalf of everyone who holds a place for these feel good films in their heart when I say that the nerves kicked in when the decision to bring out a new Bridget Jones was made. It is often the case with successful movies that the decision to then film another one ten or more years down the line can sometimes be, well, let’s just say disappointing! Perhaps like when a previously disbanded boy or girl band decide to re-establish themselves decades later to create a cheesy pop song!
Renée Zellweger captured the hearts of the nation and beyond in Bridget Jones' Diary and The Edge of Reason and I can safely say that 12 years on she does not disappoint. As a huge Bridget Jones fan, and you can call me biased, I absolutely loved this film, far more than I thought I would. She might not be wearing her Spanx anymore but the film provides continuous laughter throughout, as the clumsy, loveable and undeniably charming Bridget returns almost unchanged, except a few dress sizes smaller. We still catch glimpses of the young Bridget Jones as she sits in her cosy, very Cath Kidston-esque flat with wine glass in hand, dancing around in her pyjamas to some cheesy pop and, just like that, Bridget is back!
I think what is most captivating about the film is the relatability that runs through the entire series; the way in which she tries desperately to get her life on track but is deterred by the many trials and tribulations on the way… including the problem of not knowing who is the father of her baby. Every girl can relate to Bridget because she gets it wrong, she gets it oh so wrong! She constantly feels like no-one fancies her, and she is constantly conscious about pretty much everything from her physical appearance to her clothing, to her mad parents to her steadily increasing age, we can all, at times, relate to her in different ways. I think this is why it’s a film for everyone!
The two candidates to be the child’s father are Mark Darcy, perfectly unchanged and handsomely charming as always, though he is slightly older, and Jack, an American. Bridget stumbles across Jack Qwant, an internet billionaire, who appears to be the stereotype for all thing’s desirable in a man. You find yourself strangely hoping that they are both the father if it weren’t impossible!
I feel such a connection to Bridget Jones and her friends in all of the films, almost as if I am friends with them myself and have been since the release of the first film in 2001… or at least I’d hope to be. We all have that friend who says the most inappropriate things at the most inappropriate of times and this undeniably represents Bridget’s best friends, Shazzer, Jude and Tom! Meeting Bridget’s friends, her crazed mother, her lovable father and her new, hip, young, trendy and undeniably annoying boss bring back the warmth that has flowed through the entire series. Bridget’s mum is prejudiced as always against all that aren’t white, middle class and willing for her daughter to have Mr Darcy’s child whilst Bridget’s dad offers his typically awkward and pun heavy humour. All the while, Bridget’s friends are always on call to hand out less than helpful advice, interspersed with flashbacks of Bridget and Mr Darcy’s relationship, his iconic Christmas jumper making a cameo appearance!
Aside from the original cast, who are effortlessly humorous, Emma Thompson, you may know her from Love Actually, appears as Bridget’s doctor in the movie. Thompson had the audience spilling their popcorn during Bridget’s baby scan, which she has to do twice, revealing the sex each time, once for Mr Darcy and once for Jack (played by the ever beautiful and seemingly age defying Patrick Dempsey) as both men are unaware of the other’s existence.
In fact, there is something resembling Sex And The City about Bridget this time round. She exudes a new found confidence that brings a smile to your face and Zellweger fills the role for a third time round as only she can. We’ve seen her from all angles…literally! From lying face down in mud, to ironing her hair, to eating her whole bodyweight in food but there is nothing more comical than watching Jones give birth, and that’s something I would not suggest missing!
I would highly recommend Bridget Jones’ Baby, do not be dismayed that it will not be as good as it’s predecessors because this film certainly echoes what we have seen before showcasing Bridget’s bad hair days, life fails and rocky relationships! Fun, hilarious and, at times, poignant.
Rating: 4/5 - A must see!