Thursday, May 27, 2010

Sex and the City 2

Back in Luxury

I suppose you just cannot postpone a girl's night out, not when these famous, fabulous four still have a firm following worldwide to greenlight a sequel to their 2008 feature film, though seriously, are we really that interested in the married life of Carrie Bradshaw (Sarah Jessica Parker), and the expected troubles from a modern day girl with plenty of emotional issues still too immature (she still continues to be oh-so-whiny here) to deal with?

While waiting to get some flak for that last statement made, I wonder how writer-director Michael Patrick King felt like having to craft interesting stories and challenges for the female fab four, after all, it does seem like a natural progression of problematic issues all generically laid out waiting for someone to put them into the narrative. The sequel is set some 2 years into the marriage of Carrie and Mr Big (Chris Noth) as seen from the first film, and as the relationship matures, the petty issues start to creep up, though from a guy's perspective, pray tell what is wrong with just wanting to be laid back a little, stay at home, plonked down on a comfy couch and to watch a little telly? But for Carrie, it translates to a lack of commitment and interest.

So that's Carrie's challenge to address. As for her gal pals, Charlotte (Kristin Davis) has to deal with the notion of her husband's possible temptation by her new Irish nanny Eric (Alice Eve), who is naturally endowed by Nature with humongous hooters, and the preference to go braless (which contributes to the nudity rating of the show, so there). As for Miranda (Cynthia Nixon), as the career legal eagle, hers is the feeling of not being appreciative at work, having her arc take a backseat here after a major one in the first film. As for resident slut Samantha (Kim Cattrall), it's having to tackle her post 5 decades with multi-vitamins so that her sex drive is kept at an equilibrium instead of nose-diving.

We spend the first hour in New York establishing all these issues and to attend a gay wedding for the sake of (and watching Liza Minnelli in a cringeworthy Beyonce performance), before Samantha's reputation of PR extraordinaire wins her and her pals an all expenses paid trip to UAE (well, actually Morocco doubling up), courtesy of a rich Sheik (Art Malik) who wants her to handle the PR for their hotel. The film's setting in the second half will make you wonder if it's a little out of date, with its throwaway extravagance and opulence being showered and pampered upon our quartet, from mansion like hotel rooms with breath-taking balconies, right down to personalized butlers who can warm your milk and act as confidantes dishing out good advice.

With Samantha's high sex drive in tow in a conservative Muslim society, expect comedy to come in the most politically insensitive / incorrect manner to try and draw laughter, though sometimes one wonders how such jokes could have gotten away with it. Most of them fell flat on their face, while those that did earn a deserved chuckle, seemed to be grouped amongst jokes told for the sake of, sometimes quite jarringly out of the blue, as one character mentions, she saw the punchline and went for it. Those into fashion will find the usual labels on display here, coupled with Middle Eastern influences.

It's fun while it lasted, but this again is nothing more than a glorified television episode set to rake in box office gold from fans and curious non-fans wondering just what the fuss is about. There's nothing deep in the film as themes are casually handled on the surface, but as popcorn fare, it will likely prove that it has enough gas in the tank for another romp in another city of decadence, if that should be the formula it so decides to stick to. Perhaps Singapore next, since we have shiny new IRs to tempt them all to come over?

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