Film Review's Ultimate DVD Main Selected FeaturePlay Movie: The Global Picture - Bridget Jones's DiaryPlay Movie: Region 1 Review - Jurassic Park IIIPlay Movie: Region 2 Reviews - ChocolatContents of this issueBuy it from our online stores VI DIRECT
Selected FeaturePlay Movie: The Global Picture - Bridget Jones's DiaryPlay Movie: Region 1 Review - Jurassic Park IIIPlay Movie: Region 2 Review - ChocolatContents of this issueBuy it from our online stores VI DIRECT
Dual Region Reviews (The Global Picture) From Ultimate DVD #24

Bridget Jones's Diary:

Just one selection from Ultimate DVD's Global Picture Reviews section.

This is a global R1 / R2 release. More reviews: Region 2Region 1

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BRIDGET JONES'S DIARY Rated: R / 15

The Movie

A best-selling book that's near impossible to film, starring a glamorous Texan as a neurotic overweight Brit, directed by an unknown first-timer. The omens were not good for Bridget Jones's Diary, but against the odds Working Title have delivered a romantic, riotous, charming and – importantly – very honest film that's every bit the equal of Notting Hill or Four Weddings.

As the "verbally incontinent spinster who smokes like a chimney and drinks like a fish", Zellwegger is a revelation. Naïve, adorable and her own worst enemy, Bridget is a real creation (admit it: we all know her) and it's hard to imagine anyone better in the role. Likewise, casting Grant against type as the caddish Daniel, and having Firth (best known as Mr D'Arcy from the BBC's Pride and Prejudice) playing haughty barrister and romantic hero Mark D'Arcy is a stroke of genius, quietly building upon the layers of knowing humour.

Fans of the book might be disappointed by some major reorganization: the diary structure gives way to romantic comedy conventions, and Bridget's delightful and ghastly mates suffer the most, reduced to just a few minutes of screen time. Even so, this is a sympathetic and irresistible look at the trials and tribulations of an unmarried thirty-something, and 4 stars - Damn Good Discone of the comedy highlights of 2001.

The Extras

Let's forgive the hideous, and rather slow, menu screen: there's a sense of humour to the extra features that match the style of the film. Sharon Maguire entertains throughout her Director's Commentary; a long-time friend of writer Helen Fielding and the basis for the character of Shazza, she's well qualified to discuss the BJ phenomenon. From her praise for Zellwegger ("she has fantastic warmth and a look of permanent confusion on her face"), admiration for Grant ("a sense of humour that can make you laugh your arse off") and lust for Firth ("Ding-dong") she amuses and informs for over an hour and a half.

Similarly, the Featurette is wholly watchable (if a little short at 10 mins) and replaces the standard sales pitch with humour. The Music Videos are by Gabrielle and Shelby Lynne, there are excerpts from the original Bridget Jones columns from The Independent newspaper, and the Deleted Scenes are fully-produced (see issue). Oddly, the Region 2 version has one more scene than its R1 counterpart – a (fairly dull) 4 stars - Damn Good Discflashback to Bridget as a child at a birthday party.

David Richardson

Director's Commentary - 1; Music Videos - 2; Deleted Scenes - 7; Featurettes - 1;
Diary Columns- Various.
V good indeed!

Credits
Bridget Jones's Diary on DVD

Cast Renée Zellweger, Hugh Grant, Colin Firth
Director Sharon Maguire
Year 2001
R1 Duration 98 mins
R2 Duration 93 mins
Screen Ratio 2.35:1
Anamorphic Yes
Audio Dolby Digital 5.1
R1 Chapters 17
R2 Chapters 28
R1 Languages English, French
R2 Languages English, Italian, Spanish, French
R1 Subtitles English for Hearing Impaired
R2 Subtitles English, French, Portuguese, Dutch
R1 Release Date Oct 9

R2 Release Date December 1
R1 Distributor Miramax
R2 Distributor Columbia Tristar

 

Highlight

Chapter 12 -
"To Bridget, just
as she is"

Bridget hosts a dinner party, and transforms an exotic recipe into blue soup and marmalade.

Deleted Scenes (details in issue)

1: Have You Met Miss Jones?
2: Bridget – Marketing Genius
3: Dad – Not VG
4: Phone Message – Not VG
5: How to Attract a Man
6: The Perfect Relationship
7: And Finally

Order the Region 2 DVD @BlackStar: big discount on pre-orders!

Review © Visual Imagination Ltd 2001. Not for reproduction

From Ultimate DVD #24
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