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Bridget Jones's Baby

(Image credit: © 2016 Universal Studios. All R)

Back for her third turn as Helen Fielding's irrepressible Bridget Jones, Renée Zellweger proves as funny and endearing as ever

Back for her third turn as Helen Fielding's irrepressible Bridget Jones, Renée Zellweger proves as funny and endearing as ever.

She has a new predicament to wrestle with in her inimitably cack-handed fashion: pregnancy. But is the prospective dad Patrick Dempsey's billionaire American Jack, following a bonk in a music festival yurt, or Colin Firth's uptight Mark Darcy, courtesy of the briefest of rebound flings a few days later?

It's a slender plot, but original 2001 film director Sharon Maguire, returning to the helm after sitting out the weaker 2004 sequel, makes the most of the gags in a screenplay co-written by Fielding, Dan Mazer and Emma Thompson.

The rivalry between Dempsey's smooth Yank and Firth's ill-at-ease Englishman produces some sniggers, Thompson provides her share of giggles as Bridget's droll gynaecologist and Sarah Solemani supplies rude chuckles as a brazenly sassy TV newsreader.

But it's Zellweger who induces the film's biggest, heartiest, most joyfully good-natured guffaws.