Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Why I'm Mad at SATC 2

SPOILER ALERT! DON'T READ IF YOU DON'T WANT TO KNOW ABOUT THIS MOVIE YET!



OK, here's the deal. I love this series. I loved the first movie. It's just fun. I love the concept of the show so much that I even overlooked it when characters did things that I really did not approve of, because underneath all the "stuff" there was something that made these women real.  I really, really wanted to love this movie. It is absolutely painful for me to not be able to get behind the second film.
Let's start with the wedding. I mean, whoa. It was fun though, and right for those characters. However, the constant barrage of "gay wedding" jokes was too much. We GET IT. How about pushing the fact that the wedding couldn't even be held in both the grooms' home state? Perfect opportunity to slip some substance in - wasted. Sure, there were a couple of cracks about it, but I've seen clearer messages about this subject on Will and Grace, and that was how many years ago? A little social comment here might, might have balanced out the pure frivolity of the rest of the film. It seems like Michael Patrick King was more concerned about the frosting than what was underneath it.

But that's not even my battle to fight. My real problem with this movie is that it is OFFENSIVE TO WOMEN.  That's right. To women. These ladies have problems and normally they are either funny or serious. Either way, they help each other out. I mean, this show has tackled embarrassment, adultery, confidence, cancer, death, marriage, children and more in a more or less realistic way. They sort of presented some realistic problems in the film; Charlotte finds being a mom is crazy exhausting, Carrie's new book bombs. Strangely, Carrie and the audience are just supposed to buy that is it normal that Big wants to spend part of the week living somewhere else ... in the same city... for fun... but everything else is cool. Right? No, Carrie. No. It's OK to get upset about that in front of your husband! Please? That's a good fight! Husband wants to watch TV- lame fight. Separate apartments- address that right now! However, the way the female characters try to solve their problems is to take out their anxiety on everybody else. Charlotte is annoyingly paranoid, Carrie snaps at Charlotte, Miranda tries to reel them all in and Samantha balks at being told what to do. It's always been like that to some extent, but in this film they are all way too self- absorbed that they cannot snap themselves out of it.

If it were just affecting themselves, then I don't think I would be as bothered. But the ladies, being guests in another country, acted as perfect examples of rude, materialistic and selfish American travelers who are unaware of what is happening around them. If you've seen the film, you know there are many examples that illustrate that point. At least Miranda made an effort to learn a little a bit of Arabic and about the culture, but she was unable to get Samantha to control herself (funnily enough on the trip that was arranged for Samantha to learn about that culture, for her PR business ).  It was almost sickening to watch Samantha crawl on the ground in the marketplace, scrambling for her dropped condoms in her tube top and shorts during the Muslim call to prayer, all the while screaming; " That's right, I have sex! SEEEX!!". This is presented in a way, along with several head scarf jokes, as some sort of triumph for the assertion of women's rights. There was another bald and forceful attempt at making some sort of "girl power" statement when the ladies have a little karaoke moment at a club during their trip. Singing a little " I am woman, hear me roar..." apparently inspired a whole crowd of international ladies to jump right into a beautiful sing-along. Ha, ha. See? Our sequined Champions of all things saved the day and showed those head-coverers how strong they are. Gross. The problem is, this old fashioned pushiness just does not cut it anymore. Women, especially ones my age, feel more and more like a part of a global community where things are not always so cut and dry. It's less "me against them" and more open-mindedness which leads to thoughtful debate and action. Sex and the City has presented four women, who for all their flaws, are cultural icons. It's just that, in the time from their peak to today, I was hoping that they would have grown up.

2 comments:

Chris said...

This is an actual review, as posted in my blog and countless others. I suppose it's basically all that needs to be said.

"SATC2 takes everything that I hold dear as a woman and as a human--working hard, contributing to society, not being an entitled cunt like it's my job--and rapes it to death with a stiletto that costs more than my car. It is 146 minutes long, which means that I entered the theater in the bloom of youth and emerged with a family of field mice living in my long, white mustache. This is an entirely inappropriate length for what is essentially a home video of gay men playing with giant Barbie dolls. If this is what modern womanhood means, then just fucking veil me and sew up all my holes. Good night."

- Lindy West, The Stranger

DH said...

I read this on your blog and laughed so hard! I wish I had written it because it puts about as much effort into the review as the movie is worth!

Another good point from other reviews - SATC2 embodies everything SATC was satirized for.