Universal Pictures
Reviewed by: Harvey Karten, Shockya
Grade: C-
Director:  Sharon Maguire
Written by: Emma Thompson, Helen Fielding, Dan Mazer, based on characters created by Helen Fielding
Cast: Renée Zellweger, Colin Firth, Patrick Dempsey, Emma Thompson, Shirley Henderson, Jim Broadbent
Screened at: AMC Empire, NYC, 9/13/16
Opens: September 16, 2016

If you’re not the target aud for “Bridget Jones’s Baby” you may be sorely disappointed by a film that caters to people who might be curious about the paternity of the title character.  However there is a possibility that you could go for some of the dialogue in which, despite the movie’s not being a Judd Apatow medium features a large number of the f-bomb, including its use once by a kid of about ten or eleven.  Generally, the film looks like a throwback to what used to be called “risqué,” and that was back in the 1950’s.

“Bridget Jones’s Baby” is a sequel to “Bridget Jones’s Diary” released in 2001 based on Helen Fielding’ novel about a post-feminist, thirty-something British woman who likes her alcohol, her tobacco, and seems not to mind an inability to deal with her weight.  When Bridget, played by Renée Zellweger then and now, has a job in publishing, and when she visits her parents on Christmas, they try to set her up with Mark (Colin Firth).  She falls for her boss, Daniel (Hugh Grant), who is not a one-woman man. Nevertheless she and Mark, both wanting her, fight for her hand.  In that picture’s sequel, “Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason,” Bridget settles in with Mark Darcy (Colin Firth) until Daniel (Hugh Grant) returns again, both fighting for her.

At the opening of “Bridget Jones’s Baby,” Bridget (Renée Zellweger) is a single woman, hitting the bottle and dancing in her red flannel pajamas to “Jump Around.”  She and Jack (Patrick Dempsey) meet cute when she falls into mud and is lifted out by Jack.  One thing leads to another and Bridget is made pregnant, presumably by a handsome, rich American.  When a newly-divorcing Daniel comes back into her life, intimately, the big question is: who is the father?  Bridget’s doctor (Emma Thompson) lets all know that a male is growing within her but the question of paternity is resolved only later.  Can you stand the tension?

Stale one-liners abound, particularly when Bridget is on the job as a TV producer, giving all the dialogue to the interviewer, which results in embarrassing conversations. All of this makes us wonder why she is not fired on the spot.  A side show involving Bridget’s mother’s political campaign (Gemma Jones) is perfunctory.

Not my cuppa. Filmed in Dublin, London and Oxfordshire.

Rated R.  122 minutes.  © Harvey Karten, Member, New York Film Critics Online

Story – C-
Acting – B+
Technical – B
Overall – C


By Harvey Karten

Harvey Karten is the founder of the The New York Film Critics Online (NYFCO) an organization composed of Internet film critics based in New York City. The group meets once a year, in December, for voting on its annual NYFCO Awards.

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