Friday, March 4, 2016

Bridget Jones's Diary by Helen Fielding

Bridget Jones's Diary by Helen Fielding
1999, Penguin Books


Synopsis: Meet Bridget Jones—a 30-something Singleton who is certain she would have all the answers if she could:
a. lose 7 pounds
b. stop smoking
c. develop Inner Poise

"123 lbs. (how is it possible to put on 4 pounds in the middle of the night? Could flesh have somehow solidified becoming denser and heavier? Repulsive, horrifying notion), alcohol units 4 (excellent), cigarettes 21 (poor but will give up totally tomorrow), number of correct lottery numbers 2 (better, but nevertheless useless)..."

Bridget Jones' Diary is the devastatingly self-aware, laugh-out-loud daily chronicle of Bridget's permanent, doomed quest for self-improvement — a year in which she resolves to: reduce the circumference of each thigh by 1.5 inches, visit the gym three times a week not just to buy a sandwich, form a functional relationship with a responsible adult, and learn to program the VCR.

Over the course of the year, Bridget loses a total of 72 pounds but gains a total of 74. She remains, however, optimistic. Through it all, Bridget will have you helpless with laughter, and — like millions of readers the world round — you'll find yourself shouting, "Bridget Jones is me!"

The Good: Bridget Jones, as a person, was awkward - well before awkward was something people celebrated in TV shows and internet memes. It was humorous at times.

The Bad: It is really, really hard to feel Bridget's pain when her pain revolves around being 120ish pounds and the size of her couldn't-possibly-be-all-that-large thighs. Her issues do eventually move past these trivial things and turn to focus on her love life, which is just plain sad. Completely textbook choices of the whiny girl in her twenties. The fact that it was playing out in her 30s, when she should clearly know better, is more pathetic than anything else. Bridget's issues are all in her own mind and of her own doing. At least the movie managed to make it seem charming more often than not.

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