A blog about general entertainment, fashion, and movies. And some random stuff too.

Friday, May 28, 2010

Movie Review: Sex and the City 2

If you read my earlier Sex and the City entry, then you know how a felt about this movie going in: terrified. So I tried to get to a place in my head where I could go into the theater to see this movie with no pre-concieved notions. Going in, I had no expectations and really just figured I was going to be disappointed and because of that, the movie didn't seem as bad as it would have, had I seen it the week before.

With that being said, there were parts of it that I absolutely LOVED and HATED. So I'll just go through all my impressions of the movie to try and create a balanced review. Let's start with the bad things so we can end on all the things I liked.

Firstly, of course, this movie really only exists as an excuse to show flashy cars, flashy places, and flashy fashion. There really was NO substance to it at all, but if anyone walked into this movie expecting depth, I feel that they may have been a little crazy. So I wasn't really disappointed by this fact, but it was kind of shameless. It was over-indulgent and more unrealistic than the entire rest of the series combined. An all-expense paid trip to Abu Dhabi, with an over-the-top hotel suit, and each of them get their own car? Ok... and why, exactly? There really isn't a rhyme or reason, they just are apparently the luckiest women on Earth. I mean of course the writers made up a reason. They use Smith's cameo as a plot device to get Samantha the hook up in the Middle East, and then we never see him again.

Going along with the problem of having no depth, the movie was EXTRA campy (or cheesy for those of you who haven't ever heard that word before, hah). It was like it was a parody of Sex and the City at some points, rather than the actual Sex and the City. The dumbest moment for me was at the end when the Abu Dhabi ladies take off their shrouds and are wearing completely ridiculous designer clothes underneath. It was just an "Are you kidding me?" moment. When the girls got up to sing Karaoke, I got excited, but then they sang "I am Woman" and it was really anti-climactic and a little awkward. Yes these characters are strong female figures, but by standing up and singing that song, it was honestly as though they were standing up there, pointing at themselves, and saying, "Hey! We're iconic, strong women! And it's clever that we're singing this song! GET IT!" And as cute as the gay wedding at the beginning was, it was even a little much. But still beautiful, haha. Also, they kept rehashing things we already know as a devoted audience of this show. For example: "We're soul-mates!" Yes, we know... and so do you guys. Why are we re-doing this? Is there nothing new to talk about? Then why are we watching this movie again?

Now for the stuff that really irritated me. I don't know about you guys, but I am sick and tired of Carrie acting like a spoiled little brat when she's actually a 45 year old married woman. Ok, we get it. You like to go out on the town, but you can stay home with your 50+ year old husband a few nights a week without throwing a tantrum or having a crisis about your relationship. What I hate about this movie is it did just what I did NOT want it to do: it showed us that no matter how old or how many mistakes Carrie makes, she is still a freaking idiot. And even when her friends tell her what she should do and what she, herself, knows is the right thing to do, she blows them off and just acts like a petulant child. It's unreal. And I don't want to remember Carrie in that way.

Speaking of ways you don't want to remember your favorite characters: remember when I said this movie was random and unrealistic? Also, remember how Aiden Shaw was a co-owner of a bar/a furniture designer? Well now he's so big in the furniture business he has international buyers/partners which is why he's MAGICALLY in Abu Dhabi at the very same time, near the very same shoe salesman as Carrie. WOW, small world. OR... just terrible plot device. Yes, Aiden has been reduced to a device to perpetuate the series and cause the main conflict in this movie, and for NO OTHER REASON. He's there, they meet for dinner, they kiss, they regret it, and then you NEVER see him again. That's the last time we'll EVER see Aiden in the entire series... and I did not appreciate it. At least they didn't sleep together... but STILL. I was irritated.

Although I obviously had issues with the movie, there some parts that I did enjoy. Firstly, I squeed out loud when the credits began and they started panning across NYC. GORGEOUS. I can never get enough of that. I may have actually liked the movie more if it had been set in NYC, or if we at least saw more of it. Also, even though it was completely over the top, the fashion made my mouth water! I love most everything they were wearing the entire time, except a few things Carrie put on her head, and one or two of Miranda's. Charlotte looked GORGEOUS the entire movie. I could not BELIEVE how beautiful she was in almost every frame. She's aged the best out of all of them, I'd have to say.

I really freaked when Smith appeared on the screen. He is by far my favorite boyfriend that any of them have ever had! I wasn't expecting him to be in the movie, and so it was a fun surprise. I also loved when Samantha wore the same dress on the red carpet as Miley Cyrus. It was a cute thing for them to do, to poke fun at how young she dresses even though she's in her 50s.

As for the characters, not all of them acted retarded like Carrie. Watching Miranda acting laid back and happy was actually really refreshing and I enjoyed it. I loved the way they showed her and Steve at the beginning in order to reassure us that they were still in love and working together. Also, it was SO GREAT to see Charlotte with everything that she ever wanted, and yet having a horrible time managing it all. I know that sounds awful, but it was just a perfect extension to her story. And I love that Miranda is the one that can comfort her on this. One of my favorite parts of the movie is when Charlotte and Miranda are talking about all the things they can never say out loud and taking sips of their drinks. It's great. Samantha was also HILARIOUS and perfectly herself. I loved seeing her try to deal with menopause and being older but still keep the attitude and style that she's always had. She's GREAT. And the scene at the end where she shouts "I have sex!" at all the men was hilarious!

The one good thing in this movie that you may be able to argue has a bit of substance is that it shows a "happily ever after" is still work. Carrie got her man and is finally where she has always wanted to be, but there are still struggles, confusion, and hardships. Charlotte had a fairy tale ending, and yet this movie showed us that once you get what you always thought you wanted, it may not be exactly what you expected, and that's ok. You just have to work through it and do the best you can because in the end it will be worth it. And that point is furthered by seeing how happy Steve and Miranda are now, after their struggles in the 1st movie.

Overall, this movie was unnecessary. It should not exist, but since it does I can handle it, at least. It's not the worst movie ever, and hopefully it will be easy to pretend the 1st movie was the real ending and that this was just a random TV special or something. I didn't hate it as much as I thought I would, I actually enjoyed a lot of it, but I would be just fine had it never been made.


  1. Holy crap the horror stories about the ending in Abu Dhabi were actually true?! I was under the impression those were largely exaggerated.

  2. That being said, I'll try to be nice and refrain from more jabs. BTW, saw Prince of Persia last night and had a great time. Not the most original movie in the world, borrowing from a number of films ranging from Pirates of the Caribbean, to Raiders of the Lost Ark, to The Mummy, to Aladdin, but still a heck of a lot of fun, and visually spectacular.

  3. Basically, from what I understand, the women, especially Samantha being the "sexual revolutionary" she is, take it upon themselves to rise up against muslim culture and the way women are covered up. She she grabs the crotch of some guy she calls "Lawrence of My-Labia" and then starts to strip down to next to nothing in the middle of the market, throwing condoms around and screaming, "I am a woman! I have sex!" And then all the muslim women around them join in the celebration of the "death of sexism/oppression". Then, in a very strange, incense-clouded chamber, all the muslim women strip off their robes to reveal that they all have high fashion designer label outfits on and look like fashion supermodels underneath.

    To be honest, when I read from multiple sources that that was literally how it ended, I thought it was a big in-joke. But to have that confirmed by you kind of made me want to vomit.

  4. It's not like that. All the incidents you mentioned were separate and speckled throughout the movie, not all at one time. None of the women join at the end and Samantha was only taking her shrouds off because she was having hot flashes. She dropped her purse and condoms fell out and that's when she shouted at the men because they were accosting her. But the other women rushed her off because they were embarrassed and felt like it was disrespectful. But honestly, the whole movie is culturally offensive.

  5. Yeah, which I think is part of the reason there has been so much vitriol thrown at it. I also hear that the movie is borderline offensive to women and pretty much undermines every bit of social commentary on consumption and feminism that the show established, in favor of essentially painting the characaters as a bunch of narcissistic women who are very shallow and frivolous people.

  6. Actually yeah it does. I mean usually their lifestyle is really hard to believe it's financially possible, but in this movie it was just on CRACK. But it was fun to watch, just.... also kind of like "Really? ALL of you have ALL of that stuff?"

  7. One of the most ridiculous things I heard was that Charlotte's kid plant two big strawberry icing handprints on her butt, and then can't stop crying because she was wearing some designer outfit while baking and wails out "MY vintage Valentino!"

    Ok. Any single mother who decides to wear vintage Valentino while baking muffins with strawberry icing alongside her two young children needs to be taken away by the men in white coats to a nice trip to Shutter Island. Then she's havign a drink with Miranda, still can't stop crying, and says something to the effect of "I don't know how those other single moms do it. The ones without full time on call nannies." The two of them then toast to "them". Gag.

  8. That's not actually how it happened. A couple of those things are true, but that's definitely not how it ended.

    There is a scene where the girls are having lunch in the desert during a camel-riding excursion and a good-looking man drives by on a Jeep. He talks to them and Samantha makes the joke that he is "Lawrence of my Labia" after he leaves. That is a seperate incident.

    Later, they have a dinner date and do offend some people because they are showing affection to one another, and he gets an erection. She is arrested because they kiss. But nothing further than that happens.

    The market scene is later and happens by accident, not necessarily Samantha acting without provocation. The girls are trying to get away from con artists trying to sell them illegal goods. One of the guys thinks that Samantha's designer bags is one of their rip offs. So he chases her and tries to grab the bag from her. They struggle over the bag and finally it rips and falls to the ground, spilling her condoms onto the street for everyone to see. The men go crazy and by this point she is FED UP with how women are treated there and just loses it. She screams at them "YES! I have sex!" Or something along those lines. So this pisses off the men even more and the girls are desperately trying to get through the crowd to a taxi before the police are called and/or the men decide to punish them themselves. The Muslim women see what is happening and motion for them to follow them to a secure room where only women are allowed. The girls follow and talk to the women, who sympathize with them. They DO take off their black robes and are wearing high fashion underneath.

    (This wouldn't actually be that far out there if these women were married to rich Muslim men. Women married to rich Muslim men who are visiting America often DO buy very high fashion clothing and wear it underneath their robes. So that's not really too far-fetched. The fact that they just so happened to be there when this happened is the part that is not so believable.)

    After this, the Muslim women give them some black robes to wear so that they can get out of there undetected. They are able to get out of there and back home. Then more stuff happened to everyone once they were back home and there was a real ending. Don't worry, it's not as bad as people have made it out to be.

    And I would say in general that I actually enjoyed this movie. It wasn't deep and there were a few stupid things, but I am fine with it being fluff. They've already finished all of the stories exactly how I would want them to be, so there's not really anything they could have screwed up with this. So I just sat back and enjoyed the silliness because it doesn't need to be anything more. I agree that thinking of the first one as the real ending is fine. It's definitely a better ending. This can just be the fun little side story that happened as entertainment.

  9. You know what Kevin, there isn't anything wrong with women having help if they can afford it. And there is also nothing wrong with the movie toasting a lot of the women who can't afford help in the theater watching these women who can. There's nothing "gag" about that to me. And I would understand crying about getting a piece of my favorite garments ruined, but that's not really why she's crying. She's crying because she's been run ragged for months and is hitting a wall which many women deal with when they are new mothers.

    I really don't think you should continue to criticize this movie since you haven't seen it and keep talking about it like you have. STFU already.

  10. And Ashlie, I disagree that they couldn't have messed anything up. They could have done AWFUL damage. I was NOT worried it would be fluff. I was worried they'd screw up the perfect endings they had already created. I'm much happier with it being fluff. I'd rather it not exist than ruin things, but fluff is the lesser of two evils.

  11. Whoah, defensive much? My comments are actually quite tame by comparison to a lot of the reviews and hate being spewed out there.

    My main problem with the franchise, as it always has been from day one, is that, in this movie in particular, it's rich white women and their "problems". I cannot tell you how much it really chaps my ass to hear a bunch of self-absorbed, absurdly wealthy people whine about their perceived struggles in life when they have EVERYTHING. Nothing honestly pisses me off more.

    Agree to disagree. :)

  12. I'm done with you right now, Kevin.

  13. You know I really enjoyed your review, especially since I felt the same way going into the movie as you did. I went in having such horrible expectations that I actually enjoyed it because it was fun. It's like you said it would be crazy going in expecting depth. However, that's not saying that there isn't depth to the series. I think your previous blog about Sex and the City explains in full the substance the show actually has. It's not just rich women and their problems because a lot of women deal with the same problems in relationships in reality that they deal with in the series. That's what the show is all about...relationships. I mean a lot of it could be considered far fetched and extreme. You would never expect a woman being broken up to on a post-it note or while having sex with their boyfriend but that's happened to me before. I was always so upset about that incident but once I saw that episode where it actually occurs I couldn't help but laugh and realize it's probably not so far fetched after all. There are so many things that show has not only taught me about sex, relationships, fashion, and friends but things that I could personally relate to. Granted not everything was realistic but that's the case with every series, and honestly you can't have everything be financially realistic and expect the audience to enjoy the main character in a closet space apartment because that's all she could realistically afford. The creators always pushed the frugal aspects of the show to it's limits and I always thought that they blew them out of proportion but all of the other aspects of the series outweighed my annoyance.

    I agree with you, Audree, that they completely jumped the shark on the frivolity in this movie. All of the points you addressed I equally disliked and I could honestly say that I would be fine without both movies and just remembering the series that I loved.

    However, I know the movies are just for fun and I've learned to think of the series and the movies as two completely different entities.

    Carrie's anxiety about being an old married couple always on the couch never going out and dining at restaurants or at extravagant events were annoying and I wanted to shake her in the beginning but as the movie went on I understood why she was worried. Granted she was melodramatic about it but I liked that they addressed how hard marriage can be. You can have all of these expectations of what your life will be like once you're married, even if you've been in a long term relationship like Carrie and Big have been in, but it still manages to surprise you because you're living in one space together as a whole. She had to find her identity as a married woman.

    I think Charlotte came to the same realizations as a mother. Having children was a completely different experience than she ever expected and realizing that her life was her kids now. Everything that was solely hers, even the clothes that define her character, weren't hers. I've never been too attached to my articles of clothing but I am attached to my freedom and my time and if I had a child that would be gone. My heart went out to her and her struggle as a mom and I loved the scenes between Miranda and Charlotte. In fact, I really enjoyed their story lines the most.

    I also enjoyed the message of how marriage is what you and your partner define it to be and how regardless of what society tells you it should be like people still crave those ideal definitions and struggle with something that is viewed as unnatural.

    I was really interested in what you thought of this film and I'm glad you wrote this review out. I'll still always come over and watch old episodes with you, especially the ones with Aiden since those are my favorite.

    The only thing I liked about them going to Abu Dubai was the reference to the World Cup and seeing the soccer teams there. It's the only sport I actually get really into and I can't wait!

  14. I will be commenting on this later when I have more time to hash out what I think...right now I'm on the fly.
    BUT I do love how I KIND of made it into your post with the "campy" reference. lol

  15. I promise I'm going to come back and leave a much longer comment later, but for now, and since I'm in a hurry, I feel the need to say just ONE thing. I liked this movie, for ONE big reason, and it's one of the reasons you cite in your final comments - that even when you get everything you've ever wanted, that doesn't mean you're guaranteed a happily-ever-after ending. Relationships are work, always. If if you get your expectations met, you still have to deal with the outcome on a daily basis. I liked the ending, and therefore, I liked the movie. I appreciated that Carrie seemed to *get it* in the end, even if she was a "petulant child" (LOL, that was great) at the beginning.

    I'll be back for more later, and to comment further on all the things that were (I agree) SO unnecessary. Let's go see this together Audree! We can google over the fashion, at least ;))))