Bridget Jones:
The Edge of Reason

Release Date: November 12, 2004
Limited release

Movie of the Day for Friday, May 7, 2004
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Never fly coach.

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Bridget Jones, the poster child for living in the age of self-aware neurosis, is back (diary not included). And Renee Zellweger has been paid to pack on the pounds in order to again play the character.

When we last saw the British vixen, everything in life was finally going swimmingly. After alienating the brooding barrister Mark Darcy, she had gotten terminated from her job due in large part to confrontations with her reckless lover, Daniel Cleaver. Much to her surprise, this turned out to be serendipitious as Bridget discovered a new career in broadcast television. The camera absolutely loved her.

Somewhere along the way, she came to realize her attraction to the Jane Austen-esque Mr. Darcy. It was possibly the moment that he offered the unusually warm compliment that he liked her very much just the way she was. Smitten, she began to fall head over heels in love with the damaged divorcee, a man who had once been cuckolded by his former best friend, the all-too-familiar Mr. Cleaver.

Bridget's heart eventually led her to pick the man of her dreams. This action gave her the courage to realize how silly it was to keep a diary. Moments after this epiphany, she found herself barely dressed and making out in the snow with one Mr. Darcy as the Van Morrison masterpiece Someone Like You played in the background.

And they lived happily ever after.

That was the presumption anyway. As fate would have it, sometimes the man of your dreams might still wind up being a handful to romance on a consistent basis. Four weeks later, Bridget finds herself all too aware of the fact that Mr. Darcy's off-putting nature and headstrong ways might not be a perfect blend with her own special brand of neurosis. Even worse, her dream job as host of a happy talk Good Morning, Britain style show is also not as scintillating as once imagined.

Every time our girl gets her life put together, karmic forces converge to drag her back down again. It's not easy being Bridget.

As if her professional problems aren't enough, that precocious bad boy Daniel Cleaver has been showing up at her door a lot lately. Every girl knows that bad boys make for good times. At first, anyway.

Bridget's romantic entanglements don't stop there, either. One of her co-workers, Rebecca, has been flirting her up non-stop recently, and Bridget always has been curious about what it would be like. Plus, we already know from her celebration of Greek lovemaking techniques in the first movie that she is a sexually adventurous young woman.

All of these different people keep wrangling for Bridget's attention...why, it's enough to drive any one woman past the edge of reason.

The Bridget Jones sequel looks to mirror the first movie a great deal more than in the book series. Whereas the Hugh Grant character of the dangerous Mr. Cleaver was almost a non-entity in book two, the producers of the movie series couldn't resist Grant's return. In order to bulk up his part and secure the cooperation of Mr. Darcy himself, Colin Firth, the two men's director in Love Actually, Richard Curtis, was brought in to re-write Helen Fielding's adaptation of her own book. The results were so satisfying that all the parties in question immediately re-upped for the sequel after the Curtis draft.

Ms. Zellweger's participation is a bit more storied. She was paid as much as $4 million (depending on who you believe) to go from a size 6 to a size 14 in order to more accurately reflect Ms. Fielding's vision of the insecure, overweight soul searcher.

Zellweger is earning the biggest paycheck of her career for the project (reportedly as high as $24 million but more likely in the $16 million range). With the original movie earning $280 million in worldwide receipts, this is but a pittance. Women are drawn to emotionally unavailable men like Mr. Darcy, and they deeply identify with the innately flawed but impossibly winning Bridget Jones. Men want to see Renee Zellweger kiss the girl from Real World: London. It's win/win. (David Mumpower/BOP)

October 31, 2004
The Bridget Jones sequel will now open in 500 locations on November 12th before expanding wider the following weekend. (Kim Hollis/BOP)

Vital statistics for Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason
Main Cast Renee Zellweger, Colin Firth, Hugh Grant
Supporting Cast Jacinda Barrett, Jim Broadbent, James Callis, Shirley Henderson, Gemma Jones, Sally Philips, Catherine Russell, Jessica Stevenson
Director Beeban Kidron
Screenwriter Andrew Davies, Helen Fielding, Adam Brooks, Richard Curtis
Distributor Universal
Trailer Click Here for Trailer
Rating R
Running Time 107 minutes
Screen Count 530
Awards Awards page for Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason
Talent in red has entry in The Big Picture



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