By: Felix Felicis (A Toast) –
I don’t know where she went, I don’t know what she was doing for the last six years but Renee Zellweger (and most of her original face) ARE BACK AS ETERNAL LONELY HEARTS SPINSTER BRIDGET JONES. Seriously, if there were a spirit animal for single women worldwide, Bridget Jones is IT; she’s incredibly relatable, totally enviable (she falls on Patrick Dempsey AND Colin Firth’s dicks in this one, people) and entirely hilarious every single moment she’s onscreen (my face hurts from hyena cackling the entire time). Seriously, I feel kind of bad for everyone who had to endure that. Except that they also got to witness the best movie I’ve seen in a long time.
As one of the most endearing heroines of the terminally single we’ve had in the last decade, Bridget Jones’s Baby is back once more following Bridget as a 43-year-old spinster who’s split from barrister Mark Darcy some time ago and as “the last barren husk in London” has made peace with that. Or has she? Our hapless heroine and her side-splitting newscaster plot catalyst, Miranda (Sarah Solemani) decide to single-it-up in the name of womanhood at what looks like the bastard baby of Glamping and Coachella where hilarious sexual hijinks (vegan dolphin safe condoms anyone?) and a mystery paternity plot to unravel ensue. There’s also the greatest cameo by Ed Sheeran and a human-sized hamster bouncy ball I’ve ever seen. Ever.
I’ll just go ahead and get it out of the way, this isn’t the movie for the terminally cynical or anyone who didn’t love Bridget Jones’s Diary or Bridget Jones: Edge of Reason. To even the casual viewer, this franchise is pure wish fulfillment and that’s why I love it.
In a world where you can’t escape the soul-sucking Klutches of the Kardashians and their latest lip kit launch or an emotionally devastating Brangelina breakup (call me, Jennifer Aniston, if you need a high-five) Bridget Jones’s Baby is a window into a world where the everywoman gets her happily-ever-after (or at least a solid one-night-stand with McDreamy).
Sadly, no three-ways were filmed in the making of Bridget Jones’s Baby, but after the mediocre trailer and slightly predictable plot offered within, I wasn’t exactly chomping at the bit to ruin one of my favorite franchises with a threequel. BUT THEN SOMETHING MAGICAL HAPPENED. No, Channing Tatum didn’t realize I was the love of his life (fingers still crossed on that one), I enjoyed the hell out of myself watching Bridget Jones’s Baby. The writing was as sharp as ever, the humor just as self-deprecating and on-point, and the characters we’ve come to know and love just as true to form.
You can feel the authenticity to the original even more so with director Sharon Maguire (also responsible for helming Bridget Jones’s Diary) back in the saddle again on this one. Huge shout out as well to franchise newcomer Emma Thompson (also a co-screenwriter alongside Dan Mazer and Bridget Jones creator Helen Fielding) as Dr. Rawlings, the absurdly funny OBGYN who practically stole the film every moment she was onscreen. Lightning didn’t just strike once or twice, it struck three times to make Bridget Jones’s Baby a shockingly glorious Rom/Com all on it’s own (or, taken as a trilogy, the sublime end to an era of a perfectly imperfect Bridget Jones).
I’m not saying Bridget Jones’s Baby didn’t have flaws. Oh, it had an objective shit ton (that’s a real unit of measurement, trust me, I’m not a scientist). For starters, I would have liked the ancillary cast to have had more screen time as they were primarily just window dressing for the love triangle plot, I would have also liked the love triangle plot to be less predictable (which may hopefully happen as an extra bonus feature on the DVD release as Maguire reportedly shot two endings to the film), and I really, really would have loved to have had several ambiguous plot points cleared up: like how you can be confused about who the father of your baby is when one sexcapade is too early and the other is too late and the father turns out to be a seemingly logical impossibility (slight spoiler only if you’re twenty minutes deep in Bridget Jones’s Baby right now, but let’s be real we know who it is). Also, there may or may not be a terrifyingly fake baby belly they take every chance possible to shove in your face and-
The point is this: NONE OF THAT MATTERS. Bridget Jones’s Baby takes everything you’ve ever loved about the franchise and delivers a witty, humorous, quirky jab right to your feels. You know, that place that sometimes hurts and you think it’s gas but it’s really the vagaries of human emotion? Yeah, that place. Bridget Jones’s Baby’s flaws are still there, I just couldn’t stop laughing, sighing, and swooning long enough to care about them.
Bridget Jones’s Baby is a slam-dunk hat trick of irreverently hilarious charm that perfectly caps off a decade of lonely-no-more hearts. Get your ass in a seat to see this today.
Bridget Jones’s Baby (2016) Drinking Game
Take a Drink: for every narrative voiceover. Take a Tiny Sip: if you’re marathoning the trilogy.
Do a Shot: whenever Bridget Jones gets boned.
Take a Drink: anytime the embarrassingly absurd happens to Bridget. Pro Tip: clear your search history, girl.
Shotgun a Beer: when your favorite pub burns down. Trust me, you’ll know when.