Customer Reviews: The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants
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on June 7, 2005
This is a truly amazing film brought to life by four truly amazing girls-- Alexis Bledel as shy Lena, Amber Tamblyn as rebel Tibby, Blake Lively as fun-loving Bridget, and America Ferrera as writer Carmen. Each girl has a different story to deliver from different parts of the world. Lena's in Greece with her grandparents, Tibby's at home working a dull job at Wallman's, Bridget is at soccer camp in Mexico, and Carmen is visiting her father in South Carolina.

Together, they form the Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants after discovering that a hot pair of Levi's fits each of their different body types perfectly. They decide that the best thing to do is to share the jeans since they'll be spending the summer apart, wearing them for one week and then mailing them to the next person. Lena gets them first, almost drowning the first day she wears them, only to be rescued by a cute Greek boy, who will no doubt get her out of her shell. Tibby gets them next, who is staying home to work to get money for more camera equipment to make her "suckumentary." She meets a vivacious 12 year old named Bailey, a girl who loves life as opposed to Tibby's "life sucks" attitude. Carmen then gets the jeans-- she learns that her father (who left her when she was young) is remarrying a woman with two children. She feels like an outcast in a see of blonde Brady Bunchers. Then the jeans head to Bridget. She's still coping with her mother's suicide, and flirts with the off limits soccer coach because it gives her something to do other than be sad.

So the jeans travel between each girl throughout the movie, each time getting a new story and opening up new chapters in these girls' lives. This is a wonderful movie. Very well played out and extremely well written, surprisingly so for a film about girl power... it stacks up much better than films like Sleepover or New York Minute, which absolutely stink compared to this rare summer jewel. RECOMMENDED!!
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VINE VOICEon August 6, 2005
Four teenagers who couldn't be more different are all best friends that have known each other since before birth. (Their moms were all in Lamaze class together.)

They have shared hopes, dreams, and now will spend the summer sharing pants. They found a perfect pair of pants that fit both thin and curvy girls somehow. They feel that there is "magic" in those pants and good things will happen to those who wear them. They promise to send them to each location (they will go their separate ways for the summer) every few weeks. They even come up with rules about wearing the pants, "You can't ever say you are fat while wearing the pants. Only the wearer of the pants can take them off." and so on.

Lena goes to Greece to visit family, Bridget goes to soccer camp in Mexico, Carmen goes to South Carolina to visit her father that she hardly ever sees, and Tibby has to stay home and work at Wallmans while making her "suckumentary."

As they start to wear the pants, things are going wrong: Lena meets the perfect boy, but their grandparents have a feud and she is told not to see him. Bridget meets a boy as well, but he is also her coach and they are not allowed to get involved. Carmen finds that her father is going to be remarried and now he is going to have two stepchildren. They all live together in the suburbs and seem to have the perfect life. Tibby meets a 12 year old who fainted in her store and this girl follows her around while she gives interviews and wants to work for her.

Do the pants really have magic in them, or are they just imagining that great things will happen to them while wearing these jeans? One thing stays true: the four friends are there for each other throughout and support one another if things don't go the way they hoped.

Of course there are a few sappy parts, some unrealistic, but I did cry genuine tears. This is a beautiful film about love and friendship. Plus, you are able to see some gorgeous areas of Greece. Transport yourself back to your teenage years and feel a little bit of that magic.
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on November 17, 2005
`Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants' is a sweet and charming film. I am a middle-aged male living in Japan, but I think I know that much. Don't dismiss this well-made film just because it is (or seems) made for a certain group of target audience, perhaps for teenage girls in this case. It is sugar-coated, sure it is, but it contains something different in that.

Four girls are not a rare situation for story. About ten years ago we had 'Now and Then' and of course, there is always a classic tale of Alcott. This film, however, has one unique common thread throughout, and that is one pair of jeans worn by four 16-year-old girls living in Maryland. As the film begins, these girls are going to spend summer in four different places - Greece, Mexico, South Carolina, and Maryland (one stays at home) but before doing so, they decide to wear the newly-bought jeans according to the ten rules they made. Just like true sisterhood.

But the charms of the film come from the four young talents, Amber Tamblyn, America Ferrera, Blake Lively, and Alexis Bledel. I must say some parts of their characters are clichéd ones, such as a surly girl Tibby working at supermarket, making a `suckmentary' of the people she thinks are boring; Carmen, who goes to her divorced father who is going to marry again; a soccer player Bridget who flirts with a handsome coach; and timid Lena who finds a love in Greece, and the courage to say what she really thinks. You can say you have heard similar stories told in books and films, and if you do, you would be excused. But at the same time you will find that the four girls are so real and charming in more than one way, not what you call `types' or `stock characters.'

But you will prefer one to the others. I find Tibby's character most impressive. She meets an equally surly girl (fantastic Jenna Boyd), self-appointed `assistant' of her documentary film, and their relations are sincerely described. You may call it a tearjerker (because it is), but it is a good one, for which reason they should be praised.

As other reviewers say, it is based on the beloved bestselling book, but I confess I haven't read it. Maybe I should, or maybe not. As far as the film is concerned, however, it is sweet and heart-warming, and should be seen by many people, regardless of age and sex.
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on May 3, 2006
What was it that attracted to this film? I'm not sure actually - I'd never previously heard of the books, or knew anything about the film. I liked the cover of the DVD if you want me to be honest! Hehe.

I'm so glad I got the DVD now, as it's a really, really good, although girls, don't expect to watch it with your boyfriends, it's not their kinda film. Bit too soppy, but he'll probs have his eyes on the actresses right the way through!

But how good were the actresses? They were amazing! I'd previously only seen America Ferrera (Carmen) in Real Women Have Curves, and I'm so pleased to see that she still has her curves & her booty, and hasn't succumbed to the image that everyone in Hollywood needs to be anorexic. The other actresses were either first timers, or hadn't appeared in anything significant: Amber Tamblyn (Tibby), Alexis Bledel (Lena), and Blake Lively (Bridget). All actresses were simply amazing, and they had brilliant on screen chemistry, you'd quite believe they'd been friends forever.

The storyline is simply this: four childhood friends are separated for a whole summer, their first time apart. Now everyone knows what that's like, been there, done that, cried over it etc. They all experience different things - and a lot of firsts are experienced. First loves, first kiss, losing virginity, death, having to deal with parents, and hinting at a possible pregnancy. Some of it really hit home with me (I'm getting old now though), and I could identify with each girls issues in the film. I'm not sure a lot of younger kids would get most of it, you really need to have experienced this stuff, in order to understand the film. Carmen has a lot to deal with, she has an absentee father, who suddenly brings up the subject of a new wife and family, and being a curvier girl than the rest of her friends leads to some outbursts. Lena has to deal with being in a totally different country to her friends, not understanding the language, and having to find out the first guy she claps eyes on, her grandparents hate and forbid her to see. She really comes out, and starts to grow into her body, and dress how she wants to dress. Bridget, the tall blonde, is a very good footballer, and decides to make it her mission on a training session to seduce her coach - which of course is against the rules. She succeeds in getting what she wants, but afterwards, is left feeling empty and dare I say it, used, and there's hints towards a pregnancy. But it doesn't happen. Why did she go all out to seduce him? To cover up the pain of her mother's death. Tibby is stuck at home, while her friends are off exploring, and her story is the most moving. She's stuck doing rubbish work in a store, while trying to earn enough to carry on filming her documentary/suckumentary. A little girl attaches herself to unfriendly Tibby, and Tibby finds herself warming to the little girl, which then leads to a shocking ending.

I've seen quite a few of reviewers describing this as a "chick flick". When is that phrase gonna die a death already? I'm starting to get sick of it now, it's over used.

I really loved this film, and will definitely watch it again at some point. It does get a bit sad at some points, so get some tissues!
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on November 8, 2005
Oh no! Why did I ever rent this chick flick? I mean, it was a pretty good movie over all, but now I remember WHY I don't like chick movies (books, etc.). These types of media are designed to be sappy in a way that hopefully makes you cry and laugh (or at least smile) and want to hug your best friend. And, yes, this movie was a success.

The Sisterhood starts with a pretty original idea; an idea that one could totally believe teenagers might think of (if one can get past the crazy notion that somehow those pants actually fit all four girls.) Teen girls and clothes are like peanut butter and jelly, after all.

But, the originality slacks off to 50% after that.

What isn't original:
...the dying little kid story (sorry, this is just done way too often)
...the fact that the shy girl finds romance and her voice over the summer
...the fact that the beautiful blonde is the overbearing, successful, leader type that always gets what she wants.

What is original:
...not all the girls have happy endings
...the movie attempts to show that teenagers sometimes don't understand what they are feeling or know what they are doing and why (especially when it comes to two subjects, parents and sex) and that
...they are prone to act rashly and in ways that may come back to hurt them.

I think the Greek rivalry in Lena's family deserved more story time and therefore was abrupt in its resolution. I found Carmen's story very touching and real and I cried quite a bit with her as she tried to acknowledge and deal with her hurt and anger.

All the characters were very different from each other (maybe a bit too different) and they were flawed (which made them more believable.) However, they were definitely stereo-type characters (the outgoing, sexy, arrogant blonde; the shy, quiet, modest brunette; the rebel with wild hair and piercing who really isn't as `harsh' as you think she is; and the slightly overweight girl who is "put upon" by others and has to learn to stand up for herself.)

The dialog was aimed more at preteens and teenagers than grown women and I really can't see a man enjoying this film.

The shots in Greece were beautiful and almost worth watching the movie just to see. The beaches are beautiful, the water is inviting, and the contrast of the white, sharp-angled Greek buildings to the surrounding land and sea is awe-inspiring no matter how many times you see it.

The Sisterhood showed that teens are better off developing good relationships and open communication with friends AND with their parents. This, and the fact that the one "sexual encounter" was handled in a way to show that teen sex is more complicated than most teen movies would have us to believe (although the resolution to that fell completely flat and unbelievable in this house), give this movie a depth and realism that is much more than one usually finds in anything "chick" or "teen." For that reason, it is a good movie to watch with your teen daughter and then talk about.

For the fact that this film shows romance as an essential (or normal or expected) element of teen life and that a physical expression of s*xual desires while still in high school is normal and acceptable, and that in the end, the one-night-stand that cost Bridget her v*rginity only caused a couple of days of a sadness, this movie is not recommended for young teens who have not made a personal commitment to purity.

All that being said, some of the questions this movie asks are important questions and good discussion starters. This movie could be a good conversation starter if you watch it with your daughter and then spend some time together afterwards, perhaps over some pie or ice cream, and talk.
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on June 20, 2005
I almost didn't go to this movie, thinking that it was for teenagers, but I was wrong. I went and discovered that, although the lead roles are teenaged girls, the movie has a much wider appeal and hits on some universal themes. The four main characters are life-long friends whose mothers met in a pre-natal aerobics class before they were born. They have always been together, but for the first time three of them will be having summer adventures in other places. Carmen is going to stay with her dad for the summer, but some very unwelcome surprises await her. Bridget is at a soccer camp in Mexico where she looks for love in all the wrong places. Lena visits her grandparents in Greece and gets in the middle of a 2-family feud, and Tibby stays home to work in a local discount store and make a documentary. All of the girls have life-changing experiences which cause them to reflect and to grow. Through it all, they are there for each other via the "traveling pants", a pair of jeans which miraculously fits all four of them. The acting by each of the girls, along with a younger girl who plays the part of Bailey, is excellent. Take my advice, grab a good friend or two, and see this movie! You won't regret it.
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on September 21, 2012
I am writing this review from a parent's perspective. I have 2 daughters, one is 11 and the other 6. There were couple scenes that were borderline for me. If you are "conservative" like myself, you may not appreciate the couple scenes of one of the girls losing their virginity to some guy she meant on a retreat. The scene did not show any nudity but it was more than I would would like my 11 yr old daughter to see from a Christian perspective. Other than that the movie was entertaining and my daughter did really enjoy it. Overall, the movie did convey good girl power message.
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on June 2, 2005
I loved all 3 of the books, so I was thrilled to hear that a movie was going to be made. I went yesterday with my two best friends but we were all a little disappointed. Lena's story was completely different, and where was Effie. I also didn't like the end with Eric and Bridget. The whole scence didn't really fit. However, I thought it was a good movie and I would see it again, I just wish that I had saw the movie and then read the book.
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on June 26, 2006
I'm a guy and mainly into guy-things. Every once in a while, my fiancee has me sit down for a "chick flick" with her, and I'm okay with that; sometimes, chick flicks are pretty good. This one was very good.

The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants is about four life-long friends who have to separate for a summer. They each have adventures (fairly deep ones) while keeping connected with one another by having a pair of jeans in common, which they mail back and forth. The situations they deal with are pretty intense for your standard young girl film: alienation from separated parents; losing virginity; bigotry; death.

Each of the stories (and they are fairly separate from one another) is interesting. Each of the actors/actresses does a fine job (especially the one who plays Carmen). While there aren't any car chases, this is a very good film that will keep just about anyone entertained. Even the boyfriend.
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THE SISTERHOOD OF THE TRAVELING PANTS (if you haven't read the novel by Ann Brashares) sounds like another silly, goofy chick flick, a made for summer popcorn movie for teenage girls to love and teenage boys to tolerate. But the title should NOT prevent the general audience from experiencing a truly tender, warm, balanced film about four teenage girlfriends bonded by a magical pair of jeans.

There are four stories here, each centered on the summer experiences of the four girls who go off in different directions and discover a lot about themselves and life: Lena (Alexis Bledel) follows family ties to Greece, encountering 'tradition vs love' with Kostas (Michael Rady, a newcomer whose looks and screen presence bode well for a fine career!); Bridget (Blake Lively) finds a balance of love and soccer in Mexico; Carmen (America Ferrera) explores family ties and body image in a new stepmother; Tibby (Amber Tamblyn) works the summer in 'Wallmans' and pursues her passion for documentary filmmaking which just happens to include a real life drama. So why do these simple tales make a movie? Each of the girls represents the delicate issues that teenagers encounter as they move into adulthood, and the manner in which director Ken Kwapis intertwines these stories through the common bond of the four girls' friendship works on every level.

There is a sense of fresh talent, fresh writing, fresh direction, and sensitive acting that make this movie one to be recommended to a large audience. A fine little coming of age film. Grady Harp, October 05
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