Ah, the Complexities of Sex and the City 2

Posted by Miss Ess, June 2, 2010 03:58pm | Post a Comment

When I went to see Sex and the City 2 this weekend, as a fan of the series, I was expecting the film to be a fun romp, reuniting me with the Carrie, Samantha, Charlotte and Miranda, their significant gays and others, and including somewhere in there Samantha grotesquely throwing herself on some guy  -- and that's exactly what I got! Bad reviews, be damned -- I enjoyed the heck out of myself watching the ladies and their over the top travels in Abu Dhabi! Plus, the gay wedding just may have been the gayest thing I have ever seen, and I am a proud resident of the Castro!

This show, and thus its subsequent movies, was never gonna be Schindler's List, people! This is Sex and the City! There's not a lot of heavy hitting drama...more like heavy hitting shots of World Cup soccer players in tiny swimwear and heavy on the Manolos too, with maybe some fairly superficial questions about the nature of love and relationships tossed in between. I liken watching any SATC to reading a trashy magazine like Cosmo. It's a bit of a guilty pleasure, a tad racy, and majorly frothy -- plus majorly fun to do once in a while for fairly mindless entertainment and a laugh!

The plot in SATC 2 is just as vapid as the show's were when it was on the air, except with the fabulosity factor upped: the women are sent on a sumptuous, all expenses paid vacation to Abu Dhabi and we are along for the twists and turns of the journey -- most of which involve masses of opulence, scantily clad men, gloriously impractical fashions, and gaping at burkas, with an ex fiance thrown in for good measure. SATC is nothing if not eye candy, and in that regard, the film delivered.

Sure, there were a few cringe worthy moments in the movie (I definitely never want to see the gals do karaoke ever again!) and I would say the writing is not as good as it could be, but overall I got what I paid for and I hope they make another SATC movie!

The show was always plainly superficial and glossy. Why expect anything more of the movie? I'm not saying SATC is great for women overall or that some of the messages in the show are not potentially damaging...I'm just saying, can we get out once in a while and have a little fun without everything having to be so serious and arty?! And am I that much in the minority when I say I can heartily agree with a review like this and yet still enjoy watching the film? Could women be -- gasp! -- so complex??

Furthermore, I honestly do really understand why some people find the show and its characters utterly annoying, but to those people I say: don't go see SATC 2! And if you liked the show, then what are you waiting for??

Sex and the City: The Movie!

Posted by Miss Ess, June 4, 2008 12:46pm | Post a Comment
Brad and I both saw the Sex and the City movie this weekend! After years of waiting on baited breath, we both agree that the movie is fabulous in every way, shape and form. Our discussion is extremely SPOILER FILLED, so if you haven't seen the movie yet and want to go in without knowing key plot details, skip reading for now. The conversation that follows is more for those who have experienced the movie already-- we want to celebrate the film's arrival and dish about it a bit.

Miss Ess: I think of Sex and the City overall as a fluffy and fun treat, so the movie really lived up to that description for me. I liken the series to reading a trashy gal magazine like Glamour-- there's fashion, there's men, there's life advice! It all comes in a slightly cheesy and ultimately fantastical package. Sure it's all a fantasy, but it's fun to be swept away sometimes and that's what the show always provided for me. The movie was more of the same and it felt so good to have the ladies back in action! I appreciated the way the film was like a bunch of episodes condensed into one enjoyable whirlwind of Manolos and cobblestone. What did you think of the movie?

Brad: I really enjoyed the movie so much as I was watching it, but I really love it now even more since I have had a day to think about it. I really got obsessed with the show and always thought the episodes were too short. They always left me wanting more. The stories felt rushed sometimes -- but with the movie you could really settle in for a long fun story. The actresses were all fantastic and seemed to just pick up right where they left off. It really made me realize how great the show was, and also the fact that there will probably never be one just like it. It sort of made me wish I could go back and see a whole new movie the next week. Much of it was sort of predictable but that didn't make it any less enjoyable. It was the perfect mix of tragedy and comic relief that made the show so great. The show was always sort of unbelievable and a great big fantasy but at the same time totally believable and realistic. I need to go watch the whole series again now. I need more Sex and the City!

Miss Ess: Me too, me too! That's what I thought as I walked out...can we get more episodes please? Another movie would be nice too, but that will take a while to make.  The fact that Carrie gets to try on wedding dresses for Vogue is like a dream come true for her and I loved seeing all those gowns-- probably the best part of the film for me. My favorite was the Oscar De La Renta one with all the intricate beading. It was pretty much like the one Jenna Bush just wore at her wedding. Michael Patrick King, who wrote the movie, seemed to know and acknowledge just what we as viewers wanted to see: not only Carrie's relationship with Big (seemingly) moving forward, but also as much fashion as possible throughout the process!

One of my other favorite parts was Charlotte and her determination to bitch out Mr. Big.  When they finally met face to face on the street, I thought it was hilarious! What was your favorite part?

Brad: It is obvious they made the movie for us....the Sex and the City TV show fans. The movie is not really made for somebody who has not watched the show, which seems to be what some of the criticism is aimed at. But that works out fine for us. It is nice to be sort of rewarded for being a loyal fan. This is also what I am hoping the new X-Files movie will do. My favorite part of the movie was probably the trip to Mexico...even if it was really just filmed in Malibu. I love when movies take you on a trip with them. This part also has one of the most depressing scenes in the movie, but also has one of the funniest scenes, sort of like the show: the perfect combo of humor and sadness. I also really liked the scenes of Samantha in Los Angeles. It was fun to see her out of her element.

ME: I want to live in Samantha's house in Malibu, with the waves crashing right up against it! That was too fab. There was so much eye candy through the whole film. Speaking of Mexico, I loved all their outfits during that section of the film, especially Carrie's rainbow colored butterfly wing-patterned dress. I think you are right as well about the sad scenes there. I was happy that the film was willing to go to a depressed, dark place -- probably Carrie's lowest low -- and that it wasn't all puppy dogs and ice cream. Same goes for Miranda's bumpy story line, which was realistic and also shocking.  The characters all seemed to have grown, even Samantha, and the writer's inclusion of that growth impressed me, cause he could have easily merely picked up where they left off. The growth brought more depth to characters we already thought we knew maybe even too much about. What was your favorite outfit?

Brad: My favorite outfit in the movie would have to be Samantha covered in Sushi for Valentine's day! I am also really a sucker for holidays in movies. I don't know why but I love the holidays and I love seeing characters dealing with the stress and fun of different holidays in TV shows and movies. And this movie covered them all: Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year's Eve, Valentine's Day, and even Samantha's 50th Birthday! The New Year's Eve stuff in the movie also made up some of my other favorite scenes. Carrie going to Miranda's house was maybe predictable, but I still loved it.

Are we being too nice to this movie?? There has got be something wrong with it, right? What did you think was missing from the movie...or what would you have like to seen in the movie?

The only problem I had was maybe the stuff with Carrie's assistant. I thought Jennifer Hudson did what she could with the script, but I really thought her character could have been written a bit better and maybe more interesting.

ME: Wow, you are a total mind reader, cause I was just going to bring her up. I thought she nailed it as well as she could. I wasn't sure what to think when I heard the news that she would be joining the cast, just cause the only thing I've seen her in is Dreamgirls, but she blended in pretty well and she and Carrie's relationship felt pretty realistic. You're right that she was somewhat underwritten, but I guess she almost had to be to make room for the other ladies! I thought the Vuitton bag Carrie gave her was hideous! And it is too bad that they got rid of her by sending her off to St. Louis, cause they could make a spin off with her and three gals lookin' for love in the city! Like SATC the next generation!

If I had to pick on something in the movie, it would definitely be the whole Love keychain plot. I rolled my eyes but overall I was willing to ignore the cheese because I was so swept up in the film.

I think Michael Patrick King did a great job of covering plot points as well as moments that he knew we as fans would like to see-- Carrie prepping for a huge wedding, Charlotte with her daughter, Samantha's 50th birthday, Carrie's old apartment...I can't really think of anything I wish he'd included that he didn't! I know that scene of Carrie trying on her old clothes before she packs them may have seemed gratuitous to those who hadn't watched the show or maybe to straight men in the audience, but that was another moment that I adored in the film!

I guess I would say, if anything, more Anthony Marantino [Mario Cantone]!

Did anything fall flat for you?

Brad: It would have been fun to see some other characters. I would have loved to see something with John Corbett "Aidan," or Blair Underwood. And we could always use some more Amy Sedaris. But the movie couldn't have really been any longer, so I guess they did what they could. I can't really find any other problems!

ME: Yeah, you're right-- I saw John Corbett on E! the other day and he was saying he really wanted to be involved too. Who wouldn't? I loved Blair Underwood on SATC! Good call. Maybe if they make another movie they can squeeze em in, and Amy Sedaris too. They did kinda leave the door open for another movie, with Steve and Miranda on semi-shakey ground and Samantha single again. I heard it might happen, so we will have to wait and see.

My last question is what did your boyfriend think of the movie? Since Curt went to a special screening, did he get to meet Stanford Blatch [Willie Garson]?

Mine actually went with me voluntarily! I think he has seen so many episodes of the show because its been on in our apartment often enough, so even he was curious to see what had happened to the ladies! He liked it too, but was noticeably a bit bored by the last half hour. His criticism is that he thinks the show is one big push for consumption, which I understand and agree with, but heck, sometimes it feels good to revel in the beauty of a gorgeous gown...and it is true that the ultimate message of the film and the series as well is that money can't buy us love OR friendship. It just helps the ladies look more fabulous along the way.

Brad: Curt liked it as well, but he was not too impressed with Willie Garson. I guess someone asked him if he was gay in real life. He claims to not be, which is fine, but he got really angry for people wanting to know. Of course they want to know! It is funny that the character who happens to be gay in real life is Cynthia Nixon. I love it. Miranda is actually probably the character I identify with the most. She just seems like a Taurus -- a bit obsessive compulsive, independent, and stubborn. The show is sort of like a younger Golden Girls, I just sort of realized. Maybe this is why I love it so much. In 20 years they can make another movie and it can be just like the Golden Girls. Can you imagine the Sex and the City girls living in Miami? I of course identify most with the Bea Arthur character [Dorothy] on the Golden Girls. I guess she is the most similar to Miranda.Samantha is obviously Blanche. Charlotte is for sure the Rose character. That leaves Sophia as the Carrie character...those two don't really match up so well. But all the other characters are kind of perfectly matched. What character do you see yourself as most?? On both Sex and the City and Golden Girls!?

ME: You are hilarious. The other day when I was watching Golden Girls I actually was thinking the same things, about which gal was which. As far as who I identify with, on Golden Girls I always loved Rose the most. I am definitely a bit too gullible, but I am not THAT gullible! It would be a cross between her and Dorothy, which is funny because I feel like a cross between Charlotte and Miranda on SATC, although hopefully I am not as hyper-conservative as Charlotte and I am not as cold as Miranda. Charlotte is a bit traditional in a world of untraditional people, kinda like me, and Miranda is a realist, which I think I am most of the time. It's a fun question to answer. And yes, I can totally see them in Miami and I am crossing my fingers that the day will come when we see that series!