Bridget Jones: unreasonably stale

Nov. 17, 2004, midnight | By Nora Boedecker | 19 years, 5 months ago

She's still slightly overweight, she's still British and she still manages to embarrass herself in almost every possible situation. In fact, Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason, though somewhat quirky and cute, is so like the first film, Bridget Jones' Diary, that it isn't even worth the trip to the theater. The new film picks up six weeks after the first one left off. Bridget Jones (Renée Zellweger) has been dating the dashing, though slightly snobbish lawyer, Mark Darcy (Colin Firth) for six weeks. Jones, however, feels uncomfortable and insecure with her relationship. It doesn't help that she seems to have a talent for poor judgment and rotten timing. And, of course, the slimy Daniel Cleaver (Hugh Grant) still lurks in the background, waiting for an opportunity to snag Jones right out from under Darcy's nose.

Sound familiar? Maybe that's because it is. The plot is almost exactly the same as the first movie: the same jokes, the same love triangle and the same awkward situations.

Sequels to chick flicks simply don't work. In the typical chick flick, the ending is always the same. Boy gets girl, love blossoms and they live happily ever after. There isn't anywhere to go from there. Though the sequel was actually based off of Helen Fielding's second Bridget Jones book, it still seems to have left screenwriters with no place to go, a problem obvious in the movie's lacking plot.

However, the acting was decent. Renée Zellweger fits the role of Bridget, the bumbling heroine, perfectly. She is not too glamorous, nor too frumpy and has an excellent sense of comic timing. And it's certainly nice to see an actress, who is usually about as thick around as her diet soda, pork up and look a little more like the rest of the world.

Colin Firth, who plays Mark Darcy, is exceedingly likeable in his role. However, his performance, like the plot, is nothing new. He has played the same character in every film he has been. It doesn't matter; somehow, Colin never gets old.

Hugh Grant, however, does.

It's hard to stomach yet another movie where Hugh Grant plays a sleazy, heartbreaking jerk. Even though he's not supposed to be a particularly likeable character, Grant's whole "sleaze" routine has simply gotten old. He is, however, gorgeous, which is the only quality that keeps him afloat in this movie.

Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason may be good for a few laughs, but it's nothing that hasn't been done before. The situations are preposterous and the conflicts are petty. The movie is, in a word, frustrating. So save your $7.50 and go rent the first movie. You'll hardly be able to tell the difference.

Nora Boedecker. Nora Boedecker wants to be more like Eve when she grows up. More »

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