Saturday, April 1, 2017
SEX AND THE CITY
(May 2008, U.S.)
I am about to attempt to give a male's perspective and point of view (very likely chauvinistic, too!) on what I consider to be, in my humble male opinion, the most "chickiest" of all chick flicks, SEX AND THE CITY, the movie that continues the popular HBO series that went off the air in 2004. But first, a little backstory of my own...
I first discovered the HBO show in 1999, around the time I started dating my future wife. As in all new relationships, the conversions of one's likes and dislikes to the other person's entertainment appreciations is inevitable. Seeing movies the other person likes, visiting museum exhibits the other person like and trying out new TV shows you'd never watch on your own. SEX AND THE CITY was already into Season Two when my wife (sorry...girlfriend) urged me to watch it with her every Sunday night. Well, you know what happens - you reluctantly agree at first, you slowly get used to the new show in your life and before you know it, you find that you, like your better half, don't want to miss a single episode and are willing to make every effort to make sure you're in front of the TV at the appropriate time (I didn't have anything like a Tivo or DVR machine at that time). After a while, SEX AND THE CITY became a weekly ritual I started to look forward to because I found myself quite turned on by all the highly-sexual content of the show's four female character, particularly that of Samantha Jones, who (to put it bluntly) loved, loved, loved to fuck! Sometimes the hot topics of an episode would even lead to my having sex also...sometimes. Anyway, I stayed faithful to the show right up until the end and saw no reason to ever look back. When the movie follow-up was released four years later, I didn't exactly rush to the movies to see what would happen to these four ladies of New York City next. It could easily wait until DVD or HBO.
To start things off rather bluntly, the film of SEX AND THE CITY is quite simply a nearly two and a half hour version of the show. There's absolutely nothing new or unique that's been added for any cinematic value. Even the show's director, Michael Patrick King, is at the helm of what he clearly knows so well. My point here is that if you were a fan of the show, then there's no reason the film will disappoint you. If you never watched the show before...actually, if you're a MAN and you never watched the show before, then this film is very likely going to try your patience, even if you're forced to watch it with your significant other.
So, it's four years later and Carrie Bradshaw (played by Sarah Jessica Parker) gives us a brief narration of the events that have happened to her and her three best friends over the last ten years (very convenient for those who aren't in the know). Charlotte (played by Kristin Davis) is happily married to her divorce lawyer, mother of an adopted Chinese girl and still a little-Miss-Goodie-Two-Shoes prude. Miranda (played by Cynthia Nixon) is married, a mother, living in Brooklyn and has lost interest in sex with her husband (bitch!) for the time being. Samantha (played by Kim Cattrall) lives in Los Angeles with her stud-muffin superstar-model boyfriend and still loves to fuck! Carrie is, of course, still fine and fabulous and strutting her hot ass around the streets of Manhattan and is about to move into her 5th Avenue penthouse dream apartment with Big (played by Chris Noth) and is facing the fact that she'll have no legal rights to said apartment because he's paying for it. To ease her insecurities, Big suggests that they marry. The proposal is delivered as more of a business proposal than anything else, but Carries joyfully agrees. Now, you'd think this could be a simple matter of two people who were never that interested in marriage before just tying the knot, right? Wrong! Remember, Carrie Bradshaw is the city's ultimate image of fabulous, and a published writer, to boot. So when she's asked to do a bridal photo shoot for Vogue and is given the wedding dress of her dreams, she's suddenly unleashed into the pit of hell that is wedding planning, wedding decisions and every other egotistical issue that's ultimately designed to cater only to the bride's needs and leave the poor schmuck-of-a-groom left standing in the cold wondering what the hell is happening to him. Carrie's planning goes so far over the top that she completely forgets the notion that her pending marriage to Big is supposed to be about them and not how it's all going to make her look to her friends and adoring public.
By the way, I couldn't help but wonder if you're sensing a little anger in my writing now? Perhaps you are. I've been to my share of (Jewish) weddings that were so over-the-top ridiculous, I was practically ashamed to even be there. Thankfully and happily, my own wedding in 2001 was nothing like that. It was about me and my bride and not how it all made us look to others (the greatest day of my life!).
Anyway, when the big day finally arrives, Big is so overcome with fear and uncertainty about what he's about to do for the third time in his life, that he fails to get out of the car in front of the New York Public Library at the crucial moment. Even when he tries to take his little stunt back moments later, it's too late, because Carrie's realized what he's done and it's all over. From here, the film takes off to Mexico where Carrie tries to heal with her three best friends on what was supposed to be her honeymoon with Big. Carrie sleeps and Carrie suffers and I'd be lying to you if I told you that I, as the viewer, don't feel she deserves what's happened to her. Any woman who is so ME, ME, ME and fabulous, fabulous, fabulous and fails to remember what the true meaning behind the marriage is, deserves to fall flat on her pretty, little ass!
(there's that anger again!).
As Carrie is having her crisis and trying to bounce back from it, Miranda is fighting her own marital battles as she tries to get over her husband Steve's one-time infidelity that occurred some months ago because she had lost sexual interest in him. Okay, let's just forget for a moment that I'm a man and it's practically my obligation to take another man's side. But really, when a wife goes for months and months making it very clear that she no longer has sexual interest in the man she's supposed to love, what do we expect the man to do?? Cheating is wrong, yes, but when you're being repeatedly ignored by the woman you love, what are you expected to do? Just sit there and idly take it forever?? Well, as cliché would have it, time, patience and a little marriage counseling inevitably heal all wounds and Miranda and Steve live happily ever after as they meet in the middle of the Brooklyn Bridge. Oh, and in cause you're wondering, Carrie and Big settle things, too, and are married in the simplest way - in a downtown courthouse and with their best friends over pancakes and omelettes later on.
SEX AND THE CITY as a film works well enough, as previously stated, if you're a fan of the show. The plot content, however, really seems to focus on just Carrie and Miranda, suggesting that Samantha and Charlotte have very likely outlived their characters and are only there to offer the sidekick support of the other two friends that represent sexual freedom and prim-and-proper stability. Yet despite this accusation against these other two women, there is a moment in the film when I have nothing but true respect for Samantha Jones and that's when, in a brief moment, she's feeding Carrie some breakfast when she refuses to leave her bed while hiding from the world after having been jilted by Big. It's one of those touching scenes of true friendship, loyalty and being there for someone you care about when they're really hurting. But like I said before, it's all pretty-much outlived with those two, but there's still something to be said about having four old friends with you again after a four year hiatus from television to screen. You're happy to see them again, and you're happy to see all's well that ends well with them, and perhaps you've even decided that you've seen enough of them when it's all over and the four women toast each other to the next fifty years of their lives. In other words, SEX AND THE CITY 2 was totally unnecessary!
Favorite line or dialogue:
Carrie Bradshaw: "So really, we're, we're getting married?"
Big: "We're getting married. Should we get you a diamond?"
Carrie: "No. No. Just get me a really big closet."