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Bridget Jones's Diary (2001)
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Review Date: April 14, 2001
Director: Sharon Maguire
Writer: Helen Fielding, Andrew Davies, Richard Curtis
Producers: Tim Bevan, Jonathan Cavendish, Eric Fellner
Actors:
Renee Zellweger
Hugh Grant
Colin Firth
Plot:
Bridget Jones is a sweet, pudgy, chain-smoking British gal who can't seem to find the right guy. One New Year's eve, she decides that she's gonna make some changes in her life, keep a diary and work towards not turning into an old spinster.
Critique:
Okay, so this movie is a little predictable, but gosh darn it, I enjoyed the damn thing from start to finish! First of all, grant this picture the top spot for best soundtrack of the year thus far. Check. Second of all, let's give Renee Zellweger an award of some kind already, this girl is splendid in this film and deserves some well-earned recognition already. Check. And last but certainly not least, let's go ahead and pat everyone associated to this project on the back as well, seeing that it's not everyday that we get to see an original, funny, romantic and wonderfully engaging movie hit the big screen. Kudos to all! What a treat to see a movie starring a real character with real feelings, real problems and real-life issues. No testicle chases in this flick, folks (at least, not literally), and even though it might get stuck with the moniker of "chick flick", I personally don't think that it's that at all. That's like saying WONDER BOYS was a "guy's flick". Sure, women are probably gonna get more out of this movie than men, but that certainly doesn't mean that guys won't enjoy it either. Take me for example. I don't usually go for the typical "girl movies" (although most have been pretty crappy lately), but this movie is different. It has realistic characters, it's not set in a "perfect" fantasy world a la every other Ephron-ized romance comedy that's been coming out of Hollywood over the past two years, and it literally oozes genuine.

The movie is basically all about the lead character and thankfully, I just adored her. She wasn't an annoyingly gorgeous woman who just happened to be single because the screenwriters thought it would be a perfect way to lead Ashley Judd or Jennifer Lopez through the rest of the film, while the audience wondered whether or not she'd end up with the gorgeous guy in the end. Yawn. I mean, sure Renee Zellweger plays a beautiful girl here too, but she's not without her faults. She drinks too much, she smokes too much, she thinks she weighs too much, but you what, she's still a "real person". We can relate to her, and I certainly did, as did my female movie companion, who was bowled over by Zellweger's supreme performance. As was I. And to be perfectly honest with you, the story itself really wasn't all that much to crow about, I mean, the actual mechanics of the plot line were fairly simple to figure out early on, but it was a fun time anyway. The characters were all very well acted, especially Zellweger, who practically became Bridget Jones, British accent et al, the mood was very cozy, the film didn't seem artificial in any way and the romance and true-to-life circumstances, all brilliantly incorporated. Oh yeah, and the movie's pretty damn funny as well! And allow me to re-iterate once again, the brilliance of this film's soundtrack, which literally takes you along in certain scenes and melds you into others. A definite high point in Renee Zellweger's career, this movie will either work for you or not, according to your general affection towards the lead character and her romantic plight, and for me, she worked gangbusters! Good show, m'lady!'
(c) 2014 Berge Garabedian
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