Bridget also has difficulty getting close, although in her case the situation is complicated because the person she yearns most to know is the mother she lost years ago and whose memory is rarely acknowledged by her taciturn father-a role played, for the second time, by Blake Lively's own father, Ernie Lively.
Says the actress, "In the first film, Bridget is just running away from her problems. By the end, and with the help of her friends, she is able to recognize this enough to begin talking about it, which is a phenomenal breakthrough but still far from a solution. In this film, we see her really start to face things head-on. It takes a lot of strength."
The new story finds Bridget poised between her first year at Brown University and an excursion to Turkey as a student volunteer on an archeological dig. As usual, Bridget is on the move; her physicality conveniently shifting focus and energy away from introspection.
In the brief time she spends at home, she makes the stunning discovery of a box of decade-old letters addressed to her from her maternal grandmother, Greta-letters Bridget never received or even dreamt existed. After a heated confrontation, Bridget's father explains that by diverting these messages he had hoped to spare his young daughter the pain of being reminded of her loss. But Bridget does not see it the same way and leaves for Turkey in a tumult of emotion.
Once on site, excavating the bones and relics of a domestic Hellenic household, Bridget realizes her avid interest in uncovering the past goes deeper than the academic. "While reconstructing the daily lives of an unknown, centuries-old family, she is finally able to understand that what she needs to dig up and examine are the details of her own past," states Kira Davis.
A candid encounter with the insightful professor leading the dig, played by Academy Award nominee Shohreh Aghdashloo, helps Bridget realize what she must do and returns her to the U.S. to track down the grandmother she barely remembers.
Blythe Danner, who stars as the patient and loving Greta, believes, "Both women are drawn to one another by their heartbreak and by the same need to talk about Bridget's mother: one to ask the questions and the other to provide the answers."