Excessively Diverted Episode 5 – Bridget Jones’s Diary
This week Sammi and Beau get a reprieve in the form of the crackling onscreen chemistry between Renee Zellweger and Colin Firth in 2001’s ‘Bridget Jones’s Diary,’ a loose homage to Jane Austen’s ‘Pride and Prejudice.’ This week the only yelling is over how superhuman Colin Firth’s eye acting is and Hugh Grant’s questionable attributes, with the occasional eye roll directed at the soundtrack.
Bridget Jones’s Diary was directed by Sharon Maguire and stars Renee Zellweger, Colin Firth, Hugh Grant, Jim Broadbent and Gemma Jones.
Bridget herself is a great and believable character. While bearing little resemblance to Elizabeth Bennet, she’s still a centered, witty, and ultimately charming character. And then there’s Mark Darcy, and we cannot stress enough how INCREDIBLE COLIN FIRTH’S EYE ACTING IS! Seriously, how does he do that??? Bridget’s support system of her friends and family grounds the movie in reality, making Bridget’s life, and her ultimate victory, seem that much more attainable. And isn’t that the goal of every RomCom?
We’re not in love with Mark Darcy pummeling Daniel, though the scene is funny and well acted (and, as we state in the show, we’re not so evolved we don’t enjoy watching a couple strapping men rolling around on the ground). The soundtrack also leaves much to be desired. It’s less a soundtrack and more a “Greatest hits from every romcom you’ve ever seen” compilation.
Better than most things. All the heart eyes. One million and one Squeeeeees!
Podcast Music by Nicolai Heidlas
Podcast art by Josh Hollis
I’ve watched BJD through end to end once, and seen numerous bits if scenes, and wasn’t a fan. Clearly I need to suspend my Hugh Grant snark, my Reneé snark, and my “Colin how could you?” and watch it through again. You’ve convinced me. Also, nice sound balance on this episode.
Can’t wait to hear your take on P&P&Z. Try to be mildly inebriated and have an open mind. Just after the Hunsford Proposal, have two more drinks to see you through to the end. In its way, it is a comedic tour de force, at least until the finale.
I’m a huge Bridget Jones fan so I really enjoyed this podcast. Soooooo much yes regarding Colin Firth’s eyes – I cannot think of any other actor with the ability to convey such a wide range of emotions with their eyes alone. Truly astounding.
On the subject of the fight, I remember gasping aloud the first time I saw that last punch fell Daniel. Who knew Mark had that in him? And yes, he took it too far but once he lost command of all that pent-up frustration over Daniel shagging his wife and then Bridget, it was perhaps inevitable.
What’s more, he does pay (albeit temporarily) for his actions as Bridget rushes to Daniel’s side and makes it clear she is far from impressed. Mark departs absolutely crushed, no doubt thinking he has lost her to Cleaver yet again.
I am also in agreement regarding the Diary kiss: Notorious is without doubt the best movie kiss of all time, but Diary’s kiss in the snow is definitely hot on its heels.
As for Bridget Jones’s Baby, it’s a fitting end to this franchise. It’s not flawless, but it has warmth and charm and is a much more satisfying follow-up to Diary than the horribly disappointing Edge Of Reason. Baby is also a showcase for Colin Firth’s eyes – but more often than not, what we see in the eyes of the older Mark Darcy is almost too painful to bear at times. It’s Renee’s film, but the really affecting performance is definitely given by Colin.