Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Thing 50 Write A Movie Review


I want my money back. And my two or so hours. I want them back, and I want the memory of what just happened erased out of my brain. If none of this can be arranged, I want a skinful of pints tomorrow and some football. What the fuck is wrong with that man? Seriously? And how the hell did he manage this? Ladies and Gentlemen, but especially ladies - Michael Patrick King is the greatest conman of all time...

Somehow, by some bizarre miracle, he's managed to convince millions of women and millions of gay men, that he's some kind of hero, and pay to go see his movies, while he denigrates them and stereotypes them in the most grotesque and barely credible way. It boggles the mind. I mean it's fucking incredible.

I recently, jokingly, posted a facebook event calling for a protest against Sex and the City 2. I was promptly attacked from all angles. Two radio stations called and asked me to go on air to voice my opinions on the franchise... You must be out of your mind, I told them, there's no way I'm pissing off almost every woman in the country and a good slice of the gay community to boot. I was told I was being a chauvinist. I was accused of being a spoil-sport for millions of women who want to watch a movie which allows them to escape to a world of decadence and fashion. Something apparently loved by women. Then SuSa joked that I secretly wanted to go see the movie... It gave me an idea - go see the movie. Makes sense. You can't really have an opinion on something you've not seen can you? Now I have... So here's the review.

Sex and the City 2, which opened last week to a community of fans who'd been waiting with baited breath, has achieved a remarkable feat by convincing this same fan base that what they were seeing was not utter tripe, wrapped up in stereotypes and racism with a core of factual fallacies and a blatant disregard for anything remotely resembling reality.

In one of the opening scenes, a gay couple are preparing to celebrate their nuptials in a manner so cloyingly camp and flamboyant that it began to look like a parody of itself. The ceremony was attended by the four protagonists, their partners, one straight man (so that the irascible Samantha Jones, played by Kim Catrall, could be seen having sex at the earliest opportunity) and only the campest of gay community. Apparently gay men who don't behave like women either don't exist or weren't invited.

The "plot" allows us to glimpse the apparent problems of the Ladies Who Lunch, each in their own microcosm. Carrie, played by Sarah Jessica Parker, is confused about the nature of her marriage because her husband bought her a television, and likes take out food. The sparkle is apparently missing from their marriage. I'm sure the problems are only compounded by the two New York City apartments that the couple own, as well as the two separate rooms for clothes and shoes. Her grief and worries seem harder to take as you realise how ridiculously comfortable this woman's situation is, and empathy for her being harder to achieve, she comes across as whiney and self indulgent.

Miranda, played by Cynthia Nixon, is struggling with her job as a lawyer, and her life as a full time mom. It's a difficult task for any person to hold down an important position and raise a child. Mind you the full time housekeeper and apparently devoted and pliable husband should help... or at least you'd think. It doesn't help that a new senior partner at her company doesn't like strong women having a voice... While this tool of the "plot" may serve to deflect attention from the actual issues, and present the audience with a "bad-guy" to revile, it still remains difficult to empathise with the character who has the luxury of quitting her job on a whim.

Charlotte, played by Kristin Davis, is struggling also. Her two children are a handful, and her full time nanny has breasts. Yep. The big chested nanny is shown jumping around, bra-less and in slow motion more times than Baywatch ever could have achieved. To add insult to injury, and continuing in King's rich vein of stereotyping, the Irish Nanny has the single worst faux Irish accent imaginable. Tom Cruise and all the finest failed attempts at an Irish "brogue" couldn't add up to the half of this.... "Top o' the mornin' to ya ladies... The crudity of the character could only have been compounded with a sheleleagh and green dungarees. Her wealthy husband is staring at the breasts a bit too much. Again, it's hard to empathise, and like Carrie and Miranda before her, her complaints seem trivial versus the actual problems of women and men in modern society.

Then there's Samantha. Her underwear pulled down around her ankles in her entirely glass office, rubbing cream in between her legs. Samantha, who never misses an opportunity for a crude pun or to express her sexuality in a way that would be considered pornography in any other movie. Samantha, whose plastic face whips back drinks and chomps down pills to make any junkie proud. The actress Catrall, apparently spent the movie at loggerheads with her co-stars and this is blatantly obvious in several scenes where the comraderie seems so forced as to be cringe-worthy. Empathy with this character is impossible. But at least she never comes across as a whiney child... well, not till the second half of the movie anyway.

Pictured: A slag by any other name...
The "plot" thickens for the ladies as they're whisked away, all expenses paid, to Abu Dhabi, where taste, decency, common sense and Islam are given an almighty battering by the characters. Carrie bumps into an old flame at a bazaar, and distracted by the pretty man, leaves her passport with an aged, wizened shopkeeper. Internet chat rooms are arguing whether said passport would be worth 50,000 dollars or a measly 5,000 dollars on the black market. Samantha insults Islamic practices in a Muslim country by kissing in public, after she does her best to deep-throat a pipe. That's not a joke. It's part of the "script". Charlotte gets lost during a crisis to shop for her children. The intelligence of women, their independence, advances in women's lib, which sadly have not advanced far enough, are destroyed by this plot. Left in tatters by the characters. Gaggling sex toys and frustrated mothers are all we get to see of women in this movie. Intelligence is apparently not required.

How any woman, or gay man, can leave this movie without being offended is a mystery. How any lady can feel anything in common with these pampered, prevaricating, and spoiled grown up children is beyond a mystery.

The characters lack substance. The plot is non-existant. The cast remain unconvincing through-out and the writing is clumsy at best, offensive at worst. Watch this at your own risk.

But don't worry. It all works out in the end. And I'm sure Sex and the City 3 will be just as sensational a success...

7 comments:

  1. delighted you mentioned the disgraceful attempt at an irish accent.

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  2. Truly one of the best reviews I have read of this movie. My very intelligent, creative, witty, independent female friends will thank you for this. And I Thank you.

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  3. I hope the popcorn was ok.

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  4. Token northy's uncle toneJune 3, 2010 at 1:25 PM

    You have lost your calling, Dan. Barry Norman eat your heart out

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  5. Two thumbs up (the review, not the movie)!
    Token northy's uncle terry

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  6. Thanks, Dan. The series was often smart, funny and real... but now it seems that the whole franchise has become a grotesque parody of itself. I have no intention of seeing either movie.

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