Bridget Jones’s Baby, the third installment of the romantic fantasy about a woman not afraid to reveal her flaws and insecurities is a crowd pleaser. The original director Sharon Maguire returns but they have introduced a couple of new writers, including one of the stars, Emma Thompson. Renee Zellweger and Colin Firth are joined by Patrick Dempsey in playing the pivotal characters.
As the title suggests, in this feature Bridget Jones (Zellweger) unexpectedly finds herself expecting (a baby that is). After breaking up with Mark Darcy (Firth), Jones’s “happily ever after” hasn’t quite gone according to plan. Now aged 43 and single again, she decides to focus on her job as top TV news producer and surround herself with friends. But her future takes a turn when she meets a dashing American named Jack Qwant (Dempsey), the suitor who is everything Mr Darcy is not. In an unlikely twist she finds herself pregnant, but with a rather significant hitch: Bridget’s uncertain if the baby’s father is her longtime love … or her new-found one night stand.
It was 28th February 1995 when a small, unassuming column by then-unknown author Helen Fielding appeared in the British newspaper The Independent. It was written from the point of view of a single, independent young woman by the name of Bridget Jones (age: 32, weight: nine stone, three pounds) who lived and worked in London. The column quickly gained popularity and as Bridget became a household name, in rolled offers for her creator. Within 10 years of Fielding’s first words on her appearing, Bridget Jones had found herself in two international best-selling books and two global box-office hits. Fielding never set out to create a role model and yet the heroine was someone who had been overlooked by popular culture.
Bridget Jones’s Baby has feel good chemistry throughout, with the quirky characters and their proclivities elevating it to anything but the ordinary.
Zellweger is a gem as Bridget; is Emma Thompson, who plays an obstetrician. Patrick Dempsey makes Qwant one smooth operator and, although Colin Firth’s persona as Darcy in the movie requires him to be aloof, he certainly plays his part.
The film has been well written by Fielding, Thompson and Dan Mazer, and even though there are no villains, the output remains highly entertaining. I laughed a lot. It was a pleasure to sit through and two hours was no obstacle. Fortunately, the passage of time hasn’t adversely impacted on the popular franchise, the third part of which deserves to do well. Also featuring Jim Broadbent and Gemma Jones as Bridget’s parents, Bridget Jones’s Baby scores a 7½ out of 10.
Director: Sharon Maguire
Cast: Renée Zellweger, Patrick Dempsey, Colin Firth, Emma Thompson
Release Date: 15 September 2016
David Edwards is the editor of The Blurb and a contributor on film and television