Bridget Jones’s Baby
Posted on September 15, 2016 at 5:15 pm
I really don’t like saying this. But Bridget Jones has the same problem as Adam Sandler and the rest of those Apatow-ish man-boys. They haven’t figured out that cluelessness and mistakes that are endearing in a 20-something are annoying and then just exhausting when they get older. Bridget, again played by Renee Zellweger though without the yo-yo weight gain, says in this film that she has to stop making the same mistakes and start making new ones. Well, she’s right. But it’s pretty much the same mistakes, professional and romantic disaster, though with higher stakes this time. The filmmakers, director Sharon Maguire (the original Bridget Jones film) and Helen Fielding (creator of the character and co-screenwriter) rely on a level of affection for the characters we first met onscreen 15 years ago and most recently saw 12 years ago, but make no effort to re-introduce them to those of us who, like Bridget, were a lot younger then, or introduce then those who are too young to have seen them.
Bridget, finally at her goal weight and in a good job producing television news, has still not made things work with Mr. Darcy (Colin Firth), who is married to someone else, someone frightfully capable and intelligent. Bridget decides, with some encouragement, to go off and have some carefree sex with a random guy to perk up her spirits, so she goes “glamping” at a music festival something between Burning Man, Woodstock, and Canyon Ranch. After a meet cute than involves her falling into a mud puddle, she does have a wild night of love with a very handsome American named Jack, played by Dr. McDreamy himself, Patrick Dempsey, whose performance would have been a lot better if his character had, well, any characteristics other than being not Mark Darcy in every way.
A few days later, Bridget and Darcy find themselves at the same party and he tells her he is getting divorced. Next thing you know, she is as they say in the UK, up the spout, and has no idea, as they say in the US, who’s the daddy. If you think this is wildly hilarious, wait until she brings them both to childbirth preparation class and they are mistaken for a gay couple. What a knee-slapper! And this comes after the excruciating farce of keeping them from finding out they are both possible fathers (and that she slept with both of them) and the excruciating farce of telling them. The only thing that works in this mess is Emma Thompson at her very best as the obstetrician. Apparently she wrote her own dialog as she is listed as co-screenwriter, and her scenes have a wit and crackle that is sorely missing from the rest of the film.
Parents should know that this film includes very raunchy humor with explicit sexual references and situations and comic nudity, theme of question of paternity, very strong language used by adults and children, and alcohol.
Family discussion: How has Bridget changed since the first film? Is she making the same mistakes or new ones?
If you like this, try: the earlier Bridget Jones films, “and Baby Mama” and the “Catastrophe” series on Amazon