I know, I know– I’m a female born in the ’90s and only this week saw Bridget Jones’s Diary. Even since its premiere in 2001 though, Sharon Maguire’s Diary remains first-time funny. Based on how people still reference it, I feared the film would only be nostalgic-funny, but it remains a silly rom-com (though IMDB tries to squeeze “drama” into the genre list, pushing it) that stands the test of (admittedly not a lot of) time. It can even be added to my Non-Christmas Christmas Movies list since film starts New Years Day with Bridget (Renee Zellweger) who is 32, single, and needing a change. She decides to keep an honest record of her habits– will it make a difference?
First Bridget falls for her boss, the simultaneously charming and slimy Daniel (Hugh Grant outdoing himself really) who rocked the McDreamy before McDreamy. Then there’s Mark (Colin Firth), who is a man after my own heart solely because of the reindeer sweater. What’s most appealing about Bridget is that I think each of us has absolutely been Bridget. In the beginning we see her binge-watching Frasier and crushing a lip sync performance of “All By Myself,” repeatedly checking her brick of a phone… our lowest lows are still true to the original cliches.
A few observations– the only thing I know about Bridget’s publishing house job is that her blue computer brings out her eyes, but her posh friends, including a one hit wonder pop star (that shtick never got old), make me curious about her salary/past life. I’m going to complain about Mark’s pinstripe suit for a couple lines because he wears it in a scene in which Mark is shining as the obvious Mr. Wonderful… but he is wearing a pinstripe suit. Of course Bridget doesn’t easily see the potential; he looks like a jailbird or a vertical-striped, thin hamburglar. And when Bridget compares herself to Grace Kelly (“only ever so slightly less elegant under pressure”), I knew I was sold. The other films of the series are also on Netflix, but knowing the typical trend of sequels, I’m going to stop with this original, let it stand all by itself.