Sex and the City 2
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The fun, the fashion, the friendship: Sex and the City 2 brings it all back and more as Carrie (Sarah Jessica Parker), Samantha (Kim Cattrall), Charlotte (Kristin Davis) and Miranda (Cynthia Nixon) come together to take another bite out of The Big Apple-- and beyond--in a hilarious sequel. What happens after you say “I do?” Life is everything the ladies ever wished it would be, but it wouldn’t be Sex in the City if life didn’t hold a few more surprises. After all, sometimes you just have to get away with the girls.
The four glitziest ladies ever to hit Manhattan as a single force--Carrie, Samantha, Miranda, and Charlotte--are back, fabulous as ever, in Sex and the City 2. They may be older, and even a little wiser, but the pulls of love, lust, careers, and a pair of well-turned stilettos are still the focus of this Fab Four. As the women gamely face the prospect of aging--children, menopause, glass ceilings, and, in Carrie's opinion a fate worse than death--domesticity--they still manage to sparkle with the banter and great outfits that made the HBO series and the first film such hits. Sex and the City 2 opens with Carrie (Sarah Jessica Parker), Samantha (Kim Cattrall), Miranda (Cynthia Nixon), and Charlotte (Kristin Davis) at the wedding of two of the foursome's favorite gay male friends, Stanford (Willie Garson) and Anthony (Mario Cantone). The wedding itself pulls out all the stops--in the true spirit of Sex and the City--and is one of the highlights of the film. From the no-holds-barred décor, including live swans, to the gay men's chorus singing show tunes while the guests arrive, the event is on the far side of over the top. As the guests settle into their seats, Miranda whispers, "Could this wedding be any gayer?" and as if on command, out comes Liza Minnelli, playing herself, to officiate. (Minnelli's performance is unexpectedly splendid, and her "wedding song" will wow all her fans--gay, straight, married, single.) Yet beneath the luscious glamour and the really bad hats (oh, Carrie, you should have resisted that harlequin feathered crown), the heroines are struggling with the not-so-glamorous realities of their lives. Charlotte and Harry (the always delightful and dependable Evan Handler) have two demanding young daughters--and a nanny from Ireland whose braless voluptuousness puts new meaning in the phrase "Irish spring," and who may be threatening their marriage. Miranda, ever the focused career gal, is getting nowhere fast at her law firm. And Carrie, now married to Mr. Big (Chris Noth), is chafing at the cozy staying-in and lying-low that she thinks spell death to romance. (It should be noted that vixen Samantha is still game for walking on the wild side. At the wedding she meets a handsome straight guy and asks him what he does for a living. "I lay concrete," he says. Samantha: "That sounds promising.") And for once there are no easy, glib answers to the real-life problem of the four stars, and Sex and the City 2 lets the characters actually grow up, at least a little. Which doesn't mean their fashions aren't fabulous. The film is also chock-a-block with great cameos, including Miley Cyrus, Project Runway's Tim Gunn, and Penélope Cruz. And longtime fans of the TV series will be happy to hear that Smith Jerrod (Jason Lewis), Samantha's onetime flame, and Aidan (John Corbett), who once stole Carrie's heart, also make appearances. Sex and the City 2 is frothier than a shaken bottle of Champagne, and goes down as smoothly as a couple of appletinis. So fans, drink up! --A.T. Hurley
SATC2 Soundtrack: Behind the Scenes with Alicia Keys
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There is plenty of cringe-worthy stuff here, from menopause jokes to an over-the-top gay wedding featuring Liza Minelli to an offensive amount of cultural ignorance. This, however, is completely in the vein of the entire series. It's just that it fits into a 2.5 hour time frame rather than 30 minutes, so it hits you a lot harder.
As usual, Cynthia Nixon gets minimal storyline, Kim Cattrall is saddled with bad puns and wild sex scenes, Kristin Davis has to constantly whine and tear up, and Sarah Jessica Parker's Carrie actively seeks out drama. There is minimal conflict in the movie so something like a short kiss, the perils of raising children with full-time nannies, or the possibility of being bumped to coach suddenly take on a life-or-death type of significance.
It's beginning to sound like I hated the movie, but I didn't. It's escapism. I can't relate to these women or the problems they face at all: They buy whatever they want, can go on a week's vacation on other people's dime, change outfits five times a day... Frankly it's the same reason I liked the series in the first place; the drama was mostly well acted and had its moments, but I was in it for the fluff and bad jokes and pratfalls. And here it all is on a platter.
The jokes seem contrived and sometimes even cringe-worthy. The entire plot is over completely over-the-top. I had always hoped there would be a third film to redeem this one, or even a limited-run revival of the series on HBO to really end the girls' stories the best way. After trying to re-watch this film I don't see how that will happen.
The four leads head off to Abu Dhabi where they have the privilege of breaking every custom rule you can think of. This mostly coming from the Samantha character as you can likely guess. She's a strong business woman, but it seems she's unable to remain professional. She's unable to control herself in a foreign country and gets sexually suggestive in public whenever possible. Typically, when one goes to a foreign country, you try to behave and adapt to that culture as best you can. This is a movie though and not intended to be taken seriously, otherwise like me you'll be questioning every line uttered. This is a lighthearted romp full of ridiculousness, but if you loved the show and will watch the characters read the phone book no matter what, then you'll like this. I enjoyed it here and there, with some of those mind boggling scratching your head moments. SATC2 is the least enlightening piece that the franchise has made, but it's not that dreadful if you have nothing else to watch.
Some of the absurdities in this film are an outlandish gay wedding in the beginning that seems to go on for hours and for no reason. It had absolutely nothing to do with the rest of the movie. The gay characters in this are one dimensional stereotypical charactertures. The other outlandish moment is when the leads are in a karaoke bar and sing one of the worst songs one could choose at a karaoke bar. It takes the cheese factor up a number of notches. The real jaw dropping moment is the sloppy writing of this movie that forces Carrie to bump into her ex boyfriend Aidan in Abu Dhabi. It's jaw dropping because that would never happen in a million years. The positives of this film is the location and backdrop showcasing bright luscious scenery to a chew on. Those who are into fashion will love the constantly changing looks accompanied by a bouncy happy soundtrack that feels as if it's one long music video. The final plus is the continuing strong friendship between the four leads.
The major conflict is when they might have to fly coach. If you feel like you can sympathize with that, then give it a shot.