365 High-Def Days of Oscar: Day 9
THE PLOT THUS FAR
A British woman is determined to improve herself while she looks for love in a year in which she keeps a personal diary.
WHAT WE THOUGHT
Created by novelist Helen Fielding, who also wrote the script, and brought to life by the talented and zany Renée Zellweger, Bridget Jones is a 32-year-old pleasingly plump London working girl, a “…verbally incontinent spinster who…dresses like her mother” (to quote Colin Firth’s character, Mark Darcy). She is also clumsy, the kind of girl who might spill sauce on her blouse, a little overweight, smokes, drinks too much and sometimes says what she thinks without consulting her brain. She is also very good at improvising on the spot, a talent that charms not only the two leading men, Hugh Grant and Colin Firth, who vie for her affection, but also the five o’clock news audience who like her bum and knickers just fine.
Director Sharon Maguire, in her first outing, combines Brit witticisms, slapstick pratfalls, raunchy, sharp and realistic dialogue, and a blatant but inoffensive sentimentality into a romantic comedy that surely has Nora Ephron and Julia Roberts paying close attention. She keeps us guessing about who will get the girl (and who really deserves the girl) with the usual misdirections and misunderstandings characteristic of the genre. There’s a little dead time about half way in, and the uncertainty about whether Bridget wants Hugh Grant or Colin Firth is milked a bit overmuch, otherwise this is nicely paced entertainment sure to chase away a blue afternoon.
The Blu-Ray comes with a ton of featurettes, deleted scenes and a commentary from the director. All of this material was ported over from the 2005 Special Edition DVD. The A/V Quality is pretty sharp with the British countryside popping through the glorious 1080p transfer. The DTS-HD master audio track is pretty supportive, but it’s not like there’s anything that really blows your socks off. Still, it’s one of the better releases I’ve seen since Lionsgate has taken over the Miramax titles. I’d recommend a purchase.
RELEASE DATE: OUT NOW!