Bridget Jones’s Baby review by Bobby Blakey
When Renee Zellweger brought Bridget Jones to life in Bridget Jones’ Diary in 2001 she surprised fans and critics alike delivering a fun romantic comedy that still holds up today. Of course with success often comes sequels and that was the case here as well with 2004 Bridget Jones: Edge of Reason that brought the cast back together, but with mixed results. Now she is back in the role once again with Bridget Jones’s Baby costarring Colin Firth, Patrick Dempsey, Emma Thompson, and Jim Broadbent, but does the film capture any of that magic of the original or should they have left this pregnancy a mystery?
Bridget Jones’s Baby follows Bridget whose focus on single life and her career is interrupted when she finds herself pregnant, but with one hitch ... she can only be fifty percent sure of the identity of her baby's father. I can admit while I am not a huge fan of the series I find the original film fun and love the performances, so I was kind of looking forward to seeing her back in the role. The film offers up a decent story that sticks pretty much to a by the numbers format of the previous films with a couple of exceptions. This works to keep the world they have created more familiar but at the same time never allows it to offer up anything all that new. Everything here is pretty much a rehashed story with nothing all that different outside of Patrick Dempsey being the new love interest as opposed to Hugh Grant. For those worried they do mention his character to explain why he isn’t in the film and him not being here isn’t the issue.
The performances across the board are fine and there are some really funny moments sprinkled throughout but just not as many as you might expect. The opening of the film is pretty funny and will instantly suck you right back into the world of Jones, but once they get to the meat of the film it takes on less funny approach despite trying to throw in some jokes that fall flat. Close to the end it finds its footing again and offers up some laugh out loud moments that kind of redeem the often missed opportunities. This is kind of a spoiler, but I have to mention that one of my favorite parts of the first two films are the fights between Firth and Grant. Here they elude to a similar situation going down between Firth and Dempsey, but go a different direction with it and miss a really funny chance to not only offer up some much needed laughs at that moment, but also keep the formula that does work intact.
In the end the film is entertaining for the most part, but just felt a bit more forced than the previous entries. Firth felt like he was just walking through the motions here, but thankfully Dempsey brought a great new charm to the story and Zellwegger reminds you of why we love the character, There have been some complaints about her thinner look this time around, but that is explained in the story as well and actually works for where they were trying to go. If you are a fan of the original films then you will likely enjoy this latest entry, but it is far from reviving the franchise. It will be interested if they revisit this world as it is set up to do something else, but it might be a good idea to let this be the cap of the series.
In addition to the film this release features a variety of bonus content including an alternate ending, deleted & alternate scenes, a gag reel, and featurettes that take you behind this latest entry into the world of Bridget Jones. Grab your copy of Bridget Jones’s Baby available now on Blu-ray and DVD from Universal Home Entertainment.