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BRIDGET JONES: THE EDGE OF REASON: DVD

SYNOPSIS:
Just six weeks (and 71 excellent shags) after her romance with Mark Darcy (Colin Firth) is sealed with a kiss, and already Bridget Jones (Renée Zellweger) is becoming uncomfortable in her relationship with him. Is he really mad about her, or is his leggy new assistant Rebecca (Jacinda Barrett) about to snare this human rights lawyer of hers? Things don't improve when her new boss in TV land sends her to Thailand with that rogue womaniser, Daniel Cleaver (Hugh Grant), who tries to seduce her. And on her way home, she is arrested and thrown into a Bangkok jail for carrying cocaine, hidden in a gift she packed for a friend. Can she survive this spate of bad luck, but more importantly, can she find true love or has Mark Darcy darted for good?

Review by Louise Keller:
If you love the film, you will love the DVD. Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason DVD has a satisfying cross section of extra features, my favourite being Bridget's interview with Colin Firth, the actor. As director Beeban Kidron explains, there was considerable discussion about how to present this interview, and although it was not included in the film, the DVD shows how Renee Zellweger (in Bridget's clothes and character) interviews Firth (wearing his own clothes, as himself). This is a very funny interview, with Bridget's gauche questioning about the scene when Darcy gets his shirt wet in Pride and Prejudice. There's an audio commentary by Kidron, who also introduces each of the four deleted scenes, which are quite lengthy. There's a feature about the fight sequence, the Thailand trip and the mini-break to Austria, which are all good fun.

If there's anyone who can make the sun shine, it's Bridget Jones. And the sun shines brilliantly in the sequel, whether she is falling down the ski slopes of Austria, munching magic mushrooms in Thailand or simply going about her daily routine in wet, wintry London. It's been three years since we fell in love with Bridget on screen, and her irrepressible nature hasn't been tamed a bit. She's a tad plumper, still smokes and manages to say all the wrong things at all the wrong times. But when she smiles, her eyes light up, and we fall in love with her all over again. And all the while, she continues to scribble her thoughts in her diary - about her insecurities, her dreams and her relationships.

Renée Zellweger has made being clumsy into an artform, and it's credit to her that we care for Bridget as much as we do. It's all in the delivery, and Zellweger delivers beautifully, from her immaculate British accent to her forthright public declarations of love for her Mark Darcy - usually on speaker-phone, when he is in conference with the Head of Amnesty International. One of my favourite scenes is when Bridget, inexperienced in the snow, slides on her skis into an Austrian chemist shop, performing a German version of charades as she tries to buy a pregnancy kit, much to the amusement of the onlookers. Bridget's yin-yang relationship with Mark continues to fascinate us: he is as seemingly cold as she is warm, and we can see what attracts one to the other. This is the kind of humour that works best, and moments like those when Bridget and Mark wait for the pregnancy test results and start squabbling about the hypothetical education their child would have, are priceless. Colin Firth's Mark is perfect as the reserved, upper-class lawyer, whose meticulous nature extends to the folding of his boxers, while Hugh Grant's seducing, lying rascal Daniel Cleaver who has been in 'shag-therapy', is as entertaining as ever. Just the sight of Gemma Jones and Jim Broadbent as Bridget's eccentric mother and accommodating father is enough to make me smile, as purple becomes the colour of the day.

I laughed and loved every minute of the film, even if the script is somewhat more contrived than the first. If there's a criticism, it's that the writers have concentrated on funny situations, rather than allowing the spontaneity of the characters to drive the humour. Perhaps Helen Fielding, who once again has adapted her novel with her co-writers from the first film, wanted to stick to the tried and true, winning formula. The Thailand jail sequence is the weakest point, but the very sight of a cell-full of Thai prisoners belting out a rendition of Madonna's 'Like a Wirgin' is a hoot. Some of the gags, like the big knickers and the fight between Mark and Daniel, are repeated too, but I was having such a good time, I bought it all.

All too quickly Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason comes to the end of her diary, and although the resolution may be predictable, it's been so much fun getting there. Let's face it, happily ever after is what we want for Bridget. Even if tomorrow brings another page in her diary to fill.

Published March 3, 2005



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BRIDGET JONES: THE EDGE OF REASON: DVD (M)
(US)

CAST: Renée Zellweger, Colin Firth, Hugh Grant, Jacinda Barrett, Jim Broadbent, James Callis,William Gaunt, Shirley Henderson

PRODUCER: Tim Bevan, Jonathan Cavendish, Eric Fellner

DIRECTOR: Beeban Kidron

SCRIPT: Andrew Davies, Helen Fielding, Richard Curtis, Adam Brooks (novel by Helen Fielding)

CINEMATOGRAPHER: Adrian Biddle

EDITOR: Greg Hayden

MUSIC: Harry Gregson-Williams

PRODUCTION DESIGN: Gemma Jackson

RUNNING TIME: tbc

PRESENTATION: Widescreen; 2.50:1; Audio 5.1 Surround Sound

SPECIAL FEATURES: Bridget's Area: More Bridget in 4 deleted scenes; mini-break to Australia; audio commentary by director Beeban Kidron; Daniel's Area: The big fight; The smooth guide to Thailand; interactive quiz; Mark's area: Bridget interviews Colin Firth; Mark and Bridget - Forever?; Lonely London

DVD DISTRIBUTOR: Universal

DVD RELEASE: March 9, 2005







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