Benjamin Barry is an advertising executive and ladies' man who, to win a big campaign, bets that he can make a woman fall in love with him in 10 days. Andie Anderson covers the "How To" beat for "Composure" magazine and is assigned to write an article on "How to Lose a Guy in 10 days." They meet in a bar shortly after the bet is made.
The story picks up four weeks after the first film, and already Bridget Jones is becoming uncomfortable in her relationship with Mark Darcy. Apart from discovering that he's a conservative voter, she has to deal with a new boss, strange contractor, and the worst vacation of her life. Written by
Oh the expectations are high and the studio is bumping up the release date but what about the film? In the case of Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason, it was inevitable that the freshness and sheer pleasure of a funny, heartfelt love story of Bridget Jones's Diary, would be a hard act to top much less follow. While entertaining in its own way and filled with enough charm and wit to keep things moving and interesting, it is a step down for the Helen Fielding heroine. No Oscar nominations are forthcoming this time.
Not a couple months have passed as our favorite British journalist (played with gusto by Renee Zellweger) is dating her dream beau, Mark Darcy (Colin Firth returns as a noble steed). Slowly, our Bridget notices a young female clinging to her man on a regular basis, and with life full of its insecurities, doubts and suspicions are thus born. Enter handsome Daniel Cleaver (Hugh Grant is as dashing as ever) who wants to rekindle an earlier romance with Bridget who wonders if he has mended his philandering ways. That pretty well sums up the main storyline. There are a few other minor story threads such as Bridget's parents getting remarried, but they are few and far between.
Zellweger is always appealing even as an overweight, accident-prone romantic. Fans may be a bit startled to see her appearance after a few years of terrific performances in slimmed down roles. Firth, who was handpicked by author Fielding, duplicates his steady, straightlaced lawyer while Grant spices the sexual scenery with his bad boy ways. You will recognize returning supporting characters from before including James Broadbent as Bridget's dad, a role that is minimal at best.
While the screenplay has some nice bits of dialogue and one-liners, the whole thing just doesn't come together as a satisfying whole. There are no real surprises here in the story even though it contains a couple of mild shocks in plot line. The direction is not as crisp as before-this time Beeban Kidron(Thanks for Everything Julie Newmar) takes the helm in not quite inspired fashion. Where is original director, Sharon Maguire? Maybe frequent scribe Richard Curtis would have been perfect. Just one of his story lines in Love Actually is as good as or better than anything in Edge of Reason.
Perhaps the biggest problem with this film is that it is a chore to find anything truly engaging or to feel any sympathy and concern for Zellweger's character. In addition, there was an absence of really funny situations without seeming to be contrived. Maybe that's being picky, but that's the level of satisfaction Bridget Jones's original incarnation has engendered.
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