Bridget Jones’s Diary (2001) – reviewed by George

This generally delightful film meets my rom-com specifications: leads I like (actually three of them in this case) and at least one-third of the film has to be funny.
Now to hedge my bets. There are a number of silly things happening, and even at 1:37 it’s a bit too long. I don’t know what could be cut, but surely something.
The cast is quite good: Renee Zellweger as Bridget, Colin Firth as her childhood crush Mark Darcy (doesn’t hurt that Firth has played Fitzwilliam Darcy), and Hugh Grant as Daniel Cleaver. Solid support from Jim Broadbent as her father and Gemma Jones as her mother, and Sally Phillips, James Callis, and Shirley Henderson as her best buddies, Shazza, Tom, and Jude. And I learned from the credits, and went back to look and yes it was she, that Honor Blackman (Pussy Galore) was in the film. She plays Penny Husbands-Bosworth, and appears in the Vicars and Tarts Party scenes, looking good, white-haired and in a reddish-pink dress. If she had gotten a close-up I would have recognized her.
From early in the movie: Bridget tells the audience about her mother: “My mum is a strange creature from the time when pickles on toothpicks was still the height of sophistication.” And her mum tells Bridget to change because people are coming, “You can’t get a boyfriend if you look like you just wandered out of Auschwitz.” Kind of a tasteless line, but it struck a note with me because I have lost thirty pounds since being sick, and I have been saying for a couple of weeks that I look like I was rescued from a concentration camp (Cambodia, Burma, Germany, or Iran), the result of having way too much skin, which hangs in folds. When you lose fat, why don’t you lose skin too?
At any rate, this film is recommended with the reservation that you know your own tolerance for rom-coms, so keep that in mind.
Screenplay by Helen Fielding, Andrew Davies, Richard Curtis, and Directed by Sharon Maguire.

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