Length: 148 minutes
Director: Michael Patrick King (“Sex and the City”; “The Comeback”)
Writer: Michael Patrick King (“Sex and the City”; “The Comeback”)
Starring: Sarah Jessica Parker, Kim Cattrall, Cynthia Nixon, Kristin Davis, Chris Noth, Candice Bergin, Jennifer Hudson, David Eigenberg, Evan Handler, Jason Lewis, Mario Cantone, Lynn Cohen, Willie Garson, Joanna Gleason, Amanda Setton, Damian Young
The old saying that “sometimes it’s best just to let sleeping dogs lie” is a pretty accurate overused expression to apply to the “Sex and the City” movie. While “Indiana Jones” proved that even after a nineteen year absence, he still had what it takes to make one hell of a movie- five years is all it took to drain the life out of Darren Starr’s once groundbreaking hit cable t.v. show. First things first, I am to confess that I am not one of this suddenly popular group of meatheads who are bitching and moaning about having to take their girlfriends/wives to see this movie (god forbid, how many dumb ass movies they put their significant others through, that they can’t ever seem to return the favor once without complaining…). I liked this show when it was on- or at least the first few seasons, which I actively watched while I had HBO. I briefly dated a girl who was minorly obsessed with it, as a matter of fact, and it won me some points that I didn’t cringe when she brought it up. What these meatheads fail to remember is that this show was on HBO. HBO doesn’t just put any old bullshit on it’s network and if it does (“John from Cincinnati”) - they take the trash out very quickly. When “Sex and the City” first started, it was a very well written female perspective of the dating game and it came at a time when there were a lot of male driven gross out comedies about “hormone driven” meatheads (the same that don’t want to watch this or anything that has to do with intelligent women) around. I stopped watching after I moved out into the real world (not enough money for premium cable) and I caught up with the later seasons through re-runs and borrowing friend’s DVDs. The show, like most of the best, started to lose it’s steam towards the end and I felt that after six seasons, Starr did the right thing and let the series go before it became a severely watered down version of itself. Then, almost immediately afterwards, the buzz began about a feature length film. Why? The series wrapped up well enough. Big (Chris Noth) and Carrie (Sarah Jessica Parker) got together; Charlotte (Kristin Davis) got her adopted baby; Samantha (Kim Cattrall) got the Hollywood hunk and the L.A. lifestyle that came with it. Only Miranda (Cynthia Nixon) seemed to get the short end of the stick- stuck taking care of her husband’s (David Eigenberg) sick mother. Well, all is well that should have ended well, because five years and a lot of senseless contract disputes (who does Cattrall think she is? Angelina Jolie?) later, here is the feature film version and it’s a major let down. It’s not bad, per say, it’s just about as good as some of the more minor episodes of the show, only it’s like you’re watching a five episode of marathon of them strung together. After a brief montage to catch the few uninitiated “Sex” fans up to date (that’s for you boyfriends/husbands), things are pretty much back to where they were left off. The girls are all now over forty and not much has changed. Carrie and Big go apartment shopping and after landing the “perfect” apartment (though Carrie insists that her closet be “enlarged”), they get engaged over a dinner conversation. Meanwhile, Miranda, who for some reason in the film seems very sour and miserable, has found her husband had a one night stand on her. She kicks him out and on the eve of Big and Carrie’s wedding, she has a big fight with the ex and warns Big that getting married is a terrible idea. This gets Big to thinking and Carrie is left alone at the altar the next day (though, to be fair, Big changes his mind and is going back to the church when he is confronted by an outraged Carrie). The rest of the movie is about Spice Girls-like “girl power” as Carrie and Miranda try to get their lives back on track, Samantha tries to establish her old identity back, and Charlotte gets a welcome surprise. All of this probably would have made for a fine one hour HBO special, but instead it’s dragged out into a nearly two and a half hour fiasco that even most diehard fans had to be checking their watches/cell phones to see how much longer they had left. Like I said, it’s not a bad movie, but it’s just kind of an unnecessary one. At the one hour and forty five minute mark, I realized that part of the beauty of the show was that it was a half an hour of well written, well acted, and funny material that left you wanting more. The movie version gives you so much that there’s nothing else left to want. In the end, everybody gets their happy endings and the box office receipts more than likely mean there will be a sequel on the way. When will it finally end? Or will we have to see how the girls fare with all the sexual politics in New York’s swankiest retirement home centers?