"SEX AND THE CITY 2" MOVIE REVIEW
Independent Films, Movie Reviews
I am not a fan of the “Sex and the City” franchise. That’s my confession. I ignored the TV series, and the first film was a lackluster experience for me. But good news “Sex and the City” fans! I enjoyed the sequel more than the original.
The nature of the friendship between the four main leads namely Carrie (Sarah Jessica Parker), Charlotte (Kristin Davis), Miranda (Cynthia Nixon), and Samantha (Kim Cattrall) is explored. It’s an important narrative device that was not used in the first film.
By showing us how the four girls met, writer-producer-director Michael Patrick King invited us to participate in this new journey that takes our heroines away from New York City and into Abu Dhabi.
This time, Carrie and company must deal with aging, marriage, and women’s rights. Much like the first movie, the sequel feels like a bunch of “Sex and the City” episodes strewn in together. The first act involves a gay wedding while the second part is about Carrie’s marriage to Mr. Big (Chris Noth). The third act of the film, and perhaps the best, is when the girls visit Abu Dhabi.
The real heroes of the film are costume designer Patricia Field and set decorators Lydia Marks and Lee Sandales. Field still knows how to make out-of-this-world clothes trendy and adorable. The outfit that Carrie wears while shopping in Abu Dhabi is a delight. Her “I Adore Dior” t-shirt is accented by a flowing purple skirt and a tight jacket.
“Sex and the City” is known for its fashion and the film delivers. The set decoration is also commendable. From the stylish New York home by Carrie and Mr. Big to the ornate Middle Eastern setting in Abu Dhabi, Marks and Sandales created lavish designs fit for the franchise.
I laughed more in the sequel than I did in the first film. While the comedy is hit or miss, King seems to be much more comfortable in his role as writer, producer, and director. Still, you get silly jokes like “Lawrence of My Labia” when Samantha is talking about a mysterious man she meets in the desert.
The film sparkles when the four heroines are acting real and down-to-earth. For example, over Cosmopolitan drinks, Miranda and Charlotte extol the virtue of motherhood. Both miss the days of not having kids, but the two mothers also express the joys of raising children. Too bad these types of scenes are few and far between.
Each of the characters is given enough subplots to make us care. Carrie is afraid that she and Mr. Big are turning into a boring married couple. Charlotte is insecure that their new, young, and sexy nanny (Alice Eve) may steal her husband. Miranda is having work problems, while Samantha is fighting aging with help from Suzanne Somers.
In Abu Dhabi, the girls get to have fun. They ride camels (yes, there’s another lame joke regarding camel toes), perform karaoke (“I’m a woman hear me roar!”), and Carrie even meets an old flame. The desert setting heats up from the start and ends with Samantha showing her condoms to shocked Muslims.
“Sex and the City 2” features many cameos from stars such as Miley Cyrus, “Project Runway’s” Tim Gunn, and Penelope Cruz. But the one that we’ll be talking about is Liza Minnelli and her pitiful but entertaining rendition of Beyonce’s “Single Ladies (Put a Ring On It).”
The sequel also tries to be topical with all the insipid talks about our country’s poor economy. But what I like best is putting the “Sex and the City” girls, symbols of contemporary feminism, into a place where women are virtually non-existent.
At 146 minutes, the film tested my patience. But apparently, longer is definitely better for any “Sex and the City” fan. The sequel is definitely not a cinematic treasure, but if you adore the franchise, then it’s for you to cherish.
“Sex and the City 2” gets 2 ½ Carrie On kisses
Year of Production: 2010
Country: United States