First off, I must say how much I have been mocked for seeing this. And the original Sex and the City movie, which I watched simply because I knew I’d be watching the sequel, and needed to know if there was any necessary plot points which may be carried (sorry) over into this movie. I have no problem admitting that I thoroughly enjoyed it, even if it did negatively portray males. Heck, even I’d grown to dislike my own species in the end. After seeing the first teaser trailers, there were eye rolls galore by me: however, seeing the first massively boosted my interest for the second. But when did it become unacceptable for a person to watch a movie that wasn’t entirely aimed at them?
Anyway, that’s slightly off topic. Sex and the City 2 focuses more on the struggles that the girls have in daily life. If you’re unfamiliar with “the girls”, they are: emotionally driven ‘leader’ Carrie (Sarah Jessica Parker), Sex mad Samantha Jones (Kim Cattrall), career minded Miranda Hobbes (Cynthia Nixon) and the more traditional, conservative Charlotte York. (Kristin Davis).
It’s 2 years after the first movie, and Carrie has married John “Big” Preston (Chris Noth), Miranda is being bullied at work by a new business partner, Charlotte is struggling to cope with 2 girls even with the help of Erin, the Irish nanny who likes to go “au naturale” in the chest department and Samantha is more successful than ever in her public relations job, and after hearing from an old flame she nabs an all expenses paid trip to Abu Dhabi for all of them. As for a main narrative, that’s about it. The rest of the movie is filled with the admittedly forgettable shenanigans that they get up to, but its their interactions and relationships with each other that really brings this movie to life.
A lot of the complaints come from the “hardcore” fans, and that the characters are nothing like they are in the series. Well, this wasn’t a problem for me I’d only spent 2 hours 20 minutes in these girls company (that’s the run time of the first film) and found them to be more bearable than expected. Even I noticed a change in the characters though; they seemed a lot more toned down in their characteristics, and were a lot more generic than in the first movie.
As mentioned in the summary, the main bulk of the movie takes place in Abu Dhabi (but actually filmed in Morocco due to the actual laws in Abu Dhabi that the film explores and mocks). Now it’s all well and good to have an exotic location, but when the title and entire series is based IN A CITY, taking them out of New York gives it an entirely new feel. Yes, the characters are there, but the setting is massively important, and as soon as they arrived in the UAE, it felt like a whole different movie. The already wafer thin plot was stretched to its limit, using methods like mundane comments about the traditional clothing of the country which was borderline offensive. A character from a season of the series appeared, and was met with gasps from the all female audience (apart from me, Craig and a guy dressed in skater clothes), but I hadn’t got a clue who he was.
With Sex and the City, you know it’s going to be all about the fashion. Surprisingly, it didn’t particularly sparkle in that department either. The majority of designs were dull and uninspiring, with exception to one mildly humorous scene involving a cameo from Miley Cyrus. The rest of the comedic scenes succeed, but none of the gags are as sharply observed as the first; the script plays it safe with ‘obvious’ jokes: puns, word play, gross out humour etc. It doesn’t exactly suffer from this, but there’s always the feeling that you know it can be done better because of the series/ first movie.
With Sex and the City 2, it appears you can take the girls out of the city, but that also takes the city out of the girls.