Review: ‘Bridget Jones’s Baby’ Plays Less Desperately Than Previous Films

Bridget is older. Single again. We find her awakening to a 43rd birthday, ditched by her friends and scolded for her childlessness by her mother. She faces increasing irrelevancy at her TV news producer job (as much a satire of modern media as aging-woman-in-the-workplace) and after a couple of saucy middle-aged romps with ex-flame Mark Darcy (Colin Firth) and hunky one-night-stand Jack Qwant (Patrick Dempsey), finds herself pregnant and not entirely sure of the baby’s parentage.

This is the point at which the wheels might have come off — had single, pregnant, 40-something Bridget cried into her non-alcoholic Chardonnay for half the film I would have disconnected immediately. But 2016 Bridget doesn’t seem particularly helpless. She seems comfortable in her skin. Live television is still her sworn enemy, and the propensity to fall off and into things remains, but I saw enough of my own evolution as an awkward girlwoman to realise the film had captured something much subtler than just the passing of time.

The romance and the rivalry of the love interests are played less desperately than previous films — until a final piece of slapstick involving all three, which elicited some of the heartiest belly laughs I’ve heard all year.

All of which is just a wonderful set up for the real star of the film — Emma Thompson (who co-wrote the script) as Bridget’s fabulously droll obstetrician. Thompson absolutely chews through scenes in a way that would tickle Alan Rickman pink beyond the grave. Rosy, relatable and entertaining enough for a rewatch with some takeaways and a bottle of wine.

‘Bridget Jones’s Baby’ movie times