Whenever I finished watching an episode of the ever popular series ‘Sex and the City’, I would end up feeling lonely, I would find my clothes hideously unattractive, and moreover – my own life would seem infinitely boring. The movie did the same – multiplied by hundred. Such is the power of the chick-flick, while it lasts; one is totally engrossed in the plot and is rooting for the heroine. However, upon exiting the theatre, one cannot escape the feeling of ‘blah’ that suddenly envelopes us from all sides.
Despite the television series being a phenomenal hit, the movie version opened to mixed reviews, The LA Times states that the “film tackles weighty issues with grace but is still very funny”. On the other hand, Variety states that the film seems “a trifle half-hearted.” Despite the lukewarm response from the critics, the film has enjoyed immense box-office success, on June 11, 2008; the film’s earnings were recorded to be a whopping total of $195,264,907.
The film is set four years after the series finale that unfolded in the city of love – Paris. Carrie and Big, whilst in the midst of apartment hunting decide to tie the knot. A big wedding is what Carrie craves for – and while arranging the funds for the wedding that promised to be a lavish affair, Big starts having second thoughts (especially considering his previous failed marriages).
Miranda on the other hand, is suffering at the hands of marriage. After making the unpleasant discovery that her husband has been unfaithful – her take on ‘happily ever after’ is pretty bleak. At Carrie’s rehearsal dinner, she makes the unfortunate mistake of telling Big that he and Carrie are crazy to be getting hitched. Big’s bridal nerves take center stage, and after a great deal of hesitating, he decides to go through with the wedding. He reaches the wedding venue right on time to see Carrie leave. Carrie, having assumed that Big had decided to not go through with the nuptials (the quintessential misunderstanding – the defining feature of any good chick-flick) charges at him with her bouquet. Charlotte mediates their fight and suggests that Big should leave immediately. The rest of the movie passes in a blur as all of the audience is aware that Carrie has misunderstood Big’s intentions completely. After a great deal of hostility, girl power dialogues and feel-good music. The plot follows the chick-flick format and a heartrending reconciliation between Big and Carrie takes place, with Big using a shoe to propose to Carrie – giving her the Cinderella story perfect ending that she had always dreamed off.
But leaving the candy-floss glitz and glamour aside, one begins to question whether the movie had any true substance. To a person who is familiar with the series, the movie resembles a bunch of episodes strung together. It is also evident that corporate America surely did cash in during the making of this film – how else could one explain the endless advertising that occurs during the course of the film.
The portrayal of the characters has always been rather rigid and frozen, with Miranda being the career woman sadly lacking in her personal relationships, Samantha being a sex-fiend and Charlotte being the ultimate embodiment of femininity. The only real character appears to be Carrie; her character seems to have certain traits that are found in real women of the real world.
The only saving grace of the movie is without a doubt, the clothes. The branded bags and shoes that we commoners could never afford! One has to wonder how four women, none having high-paying jobs (except Miranda of course) could afford to wear a new pair of Jimmy Choo stiletto’s every day of the week? And moreover, is it worth it to go and watch a movie to only ogle at the clothes?
It was terribly disheartening (especially considering the beautiful finale episode) to see the characters that I had come to know and love make such a complete mockery of themselves. The movie was nothing but an overlong, mediocre episode. It should serve as a lesson to the directors of all such successful television series (read Friends) to not make the mistake that director Michael Patrick King made… for the sake of the sanity of their fans!
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