Bridget Jones’s Baby

Dir: Sharon Maguire, 2016

8/10

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Bridget’s back and she’s still as uncouth and ditzy as ever.

It’s been eleven years since we last saw the media worker and not a lot has changed.

She’s thinner and been promoted but that’s all.

It’s her 43rd birthday and Bridget (Renee Zellweger) is still single. 

Attending Daniel Cleaver’s funeral she, unexpectedly, bumps into her one true love Mark Darcy (Colin Firth) and his wife.

Bridget’s friend Miranda (Sarah Solemani) takes her to a music festival where she meets Jack Qwant (Patrick Dempsey) and has a one night stand.

Arriving back home, she is attends the christening of Jude’s child as godmother where Mark has been asked to be the godfather.

With old feelings being rekindled, the two have sex.

Weeks later, Bridget realises she’s pregnant and doesn’t know who the dad is.

And so begins nine months of toing and froing between Mark and Jack, trying to keep them apart and being unsure of who she really wants to be with.

Seeing the return of Jones is a welcome and much needed boost to cinema.

Bridget Jones’s Baby is an incredibly funny film that doesn’t feel old or have that lacklustre sequel vibe that so many films have.

Director of the original, Maguire, returns after missing out on the second one and offers us a multitude of delights with Bridget’s faux pas’s and the quirky characters that surround her.

With the absence of Hugh Grant’s Daniel Cleaver, Dempsey is drafted in as a billionaire American entrepreneur of a dating site.

Where Firth’s Darcy is staid and elitist, Grant’s Cleaver was fun and witty and it’s in this capacity that Dempsey’s character shines. 

Kwant is funny and doesn’t take things too seriously apart from his feelings for our heroine. 

Maguire tries to tease us with the mystery of who the father is but it’s plainly obvious from the start.

As well as providing script polishes, the always brilliant Emma Thompson outdoes everybody on the acting front and steals a good portion of the film’s best moments as Bridget’s doctor.

The first two films in the series were based on Helen Fielding’s books, Bridget Jones’s Diary and Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason respectively, this one is an entirely original story with Fielding serving as one of the writers as she had done previously.

The main characters fascination with Darcy is a plot element that always lets the film’s down.

Having never read the books, I can’t attest to Firth’s portrayal of the character but, for this, he’s always played as a stuck up and humourless snob. 

Admittedly, Cleaver is a womaniser and not right for Bridget but he was fun and made her (and us) laugh.

Jack Kwant is another life fulfilling joy to be around but it’s Darcy that she always wants.

None of the films offer any real explanation as to why Bridget is so enamoured with him.

The films certainly wouldn’t work without the character and needs the lighthearted touch of Cleaver or Kwant to bounce off.

Although regarded as a chick flick, this third film in the series is fun for men as well as women and it’s a thoroughly enjoyable movie with plenty of laughs and the chirpiness of Zellweger to make you smile provide a great movie night with your loved one.

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