I walked out of the movie theater grinning from ear to ear last night.
After 12 years of living in a world without any new “Bridget Jones” movies, I was very anxious to see what Bridget Jones’s Baby was going to be like. My biggest fear was that it would be similar to Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason (2004). Let’s be honest, after seeing the sequel to the first film, many of us didn’t have high hopes for this third installment. But I am happy to report that this time around, your money will be well spent on a ticket to see the latest happenings in the life of Bridget Jones.
This movie is surprisingly refreshing. One would think a third movie in a series would be filled with the same old gags and predictable plot lines. Fortunately, Bridget Jones’s Baby is a film that can stand on its own two feet. The film doesn’t rely heavily on the backstory of the previous films, so newcomers to the series won’t feel the need to do excessive research before seeing the movie.
This film will act as a fantastic introduction if movie goers aren’t familiar with Helen Fielding’s “Bridget Jones” series. Bridget (Renée Zellweger) is still the same beloved character at her core, but she has transformed herself in the best way possible. In this movie, there is a sense of confidence shining through Bridget that wasn’t present in the first two films. Her classic self-deprecating humor still plays a part, but you will find out in the first few minutes of the film that she’s no longer feeling sorry for herself.
Of course, this film cannot be discussed without mentioning the two leading men: Mark Darcy (Colin Firth) and Jack Qwant (Patrick Dempsey, formerly Dr. McDreamy). Some fans might be concerned about the fact that Hugh Grant does not reprise his role as bad boy Daniel Cleaver, but to be honest, the absence of Daniel Cleaver does not affect the quality of the film whatsoever. It would be easy to assume that Dempsey attempts to fill the Hugh Grant-shaped hole in the movie, but that is not the case. While Jack is the opposite of Mark, you will not see any fisticuffs between the two. It becomes clear that both of these men have the same goal – to support Bridget and her unborn child. Like I said, this film is refreshing.
Ultimately, Bridget Jones’s Baby is a treat for both new and old fans. Your favorite characters from the first two films return for the latest installment, including Bridget’s parents, brilliantly played by Jim Broadbent and Gemma Jones. Plus, Emma Thompson is a marvelous addition in her role as Bridget’s OB/GYN, Dr. Rawlings. As with any series that’s been revived since everyone got their hands on a smartphone, today’s technology also plays a role in the movie. Prepare yourself to see Bridget keeping a diary on her iPad and FaceTiming with her parents. No matter where you’re at on the spectrum of adulthood, you will find something relatable in this film.
There is much more to Bridget Jones’s Baby than it seems on the surface. It’s not just a movie about a pregnant woman who doesn’t know who her child’s father is. In keeping with this day and age, the movie is about acceptance.
No, this message isn’t constantly thrown in your face or preached at you throughout the entire two hours. Instead, the film serves as a gentle reminder of how times have changed. You will leave the theater with your heart full, thankful for the people in your life who like you.
Just as you are.