Cover Art and Menus: 6/10
The cover for Sex and the City 2 is sparkly and glossy, and features the four main gals looking fashionable and fierce. It is a cover that is simply based on the characters, and for this HBO series spin-off movie, it works fine. The backdrop is a New York City street, even if it has been lightened and is all but non-existent, but for this movie that is based in, and features as one of its characters (at least for part of the movie) the New York city scene kind of makes sense.
The menu for the movie is another sparkly set up, with Sarah Jessica Parker in mirrored shades and a white dress. the menu is static, which I thought was weird, given that this is a Blu-ray release.
- A Conversation With Sarah Jessica Parker & Michael Patrick King – This is a conversation that lasts about 30 minutes or so with star Sarah Jessica Parker and writer/director Michael Patrick King about the movie, and the series, and all things Sex and the City.
- The Men Of Sex In The City – In this 28 minute feature we get a mixed bag of interviews and commercials for the DVD series release. King and Mario Cantone discuss the main dudes who have been in the series over the years.
- Styling Sex & The City 2 – This is a 15 minute feature on the styles and effort that went in to making the movie. We get to see the racks of clothes, and piles of shoes that were collected to make this movie, and we get interviews with cast and crew about the effort. The main style guru, Patricia field returns from the first movie, and you can see that she knows her stuff.
- Marry Me Liza – At the gay wedding scene, Liza Minnelli appears and sings a Beyonce song (that sticks in your head for days unfortunately), and we get a behind the scenes look at the inclusion. Liza also talks about appearing in the movie.
- Audio Commentary With Michael Patrick King – King does a full length commentary track with the movie, where he is obviously into the whole project. The commentary could have used some more guests, but at least King is passionate about the whole ordeal.
- Revisiting The 80’s – While the opening 1980’s scene in the movie that shows the girls when they first met is covered in the Styling feature of the extras, we also get another 4 minute look at the idea behind the scene. The clothes are pure 1980, and the looks are just as bad as I remember them.
- SATC2 Soundtrack: Behind The Scenes With Alicia Keys – This is a very short look at the Alicia Keys song that is included on the soundtrack.
- DVD and digital copy– along with the Blu-ray are a DVD copy and a digital version of the movie to take with you whenever you might need a glamor fix.
The Movie: 5/10
I didn’t love Sex and the City 2. I will be honest and say that I was not a huge fan of the series, but I thought that the first movie was decent. The characters are by now old friends for many people, and I am not sure what I expected going into the sequel, but I have to say I was not blown away by the return of the girls.
We get a quick introduction to Carrie (Sarah Jessica Parker) and her close friends Miranda (Cynthia Nixon) , Charlotte (Kristin Davis), and Samantha (Kim Cattrall) as they were when Carrie first moved to New York, in the 1980’s. The flashback is complete with bad outfits and Madonna hair. From there we are taken on a ride that to me didn’t really seem to have a lot of plot or story attached. After an over the top gay wedding (complete with swans and Liza Minnelli) the story kinds of switches gears as the girls are whisked away to Abu Dhabi, where Samantha is asked to stay and then conduct some business (she is apparently a master promoter). A sheik is interested in having Samantha sell his hotel line as a resort paradise for Americans, and Samantha of course turns the trip into an extended girls night out, or girls week.
The resort is plush and extravagant, and the girls enjoy a long weekend away from the hussle of New York City, and in doing so, end up examining their lot in life, sort of.
It sounds so straight forward, and even, but it ends up just kind of meandering. We get to see Charlotte struggle with being a mother, who apparently has fussy children and an Irish nanny who just happens to be a complete knockout, making Charlotte feel even more insecure about herself.
Miranda’s life seems pretty even paced, but she spends the whole trip learning the ways of the East, and informing Samantha of all of the things the menopausal 50 year-old sex queen is doing incorrectly, in a land where skin and sex are taboo. Samantha, in all of her lustful glory, is trying desperately to turn back time and avoid hot flashes finds herself being deprived of her magic pills and lotions at the Abu Dhabi airport, and slides into a menopausal frenzy.
Meanwhile Carrie is struggling to find her way with big, as the two try to find a happy medium between staying at home and living a lavish lifestyle. Carrie comes off as a nag (in my book) as the couple try to find a way to each get what they need out of the childless marriage, and many of the lines that she delivers just seem odd and forced.
Overall the movie just felt a bit unfocused, and while the characters are the same people most fans remember, the story (or lack thereof) just makes this seem like a journey with no real heart. I will admit that I perhaps am not the target audience, but I have to say that even my wife (who is a big Sex and the City fan) was not blown away by this sequel. I am sure she will watch this again and again, if for no other reason than to spot “cute shoes”, which she must have uttered 5 or 6 times during the movie, but it really was not as good as the first. There was a bit too much sparkle here, without enough heart.
Audio & Video: 8/10
I thought the Blu-ray looked great, with bright sharp colors and great detail, especially in the bright desert scenes. The textures are vibrant, and the overall bright, sparkly look of the movie is nicely presented in high definition.
The audio was actually pretty decent also, with great use of ambient sound (which seemed to me to be punched up almost too much for this type of movie) and sharp dialogue.
If you are a Sex and the City fan, then you probably will buy this regardless, but this really was a disappointment when compared to the series and the first movie, which I thought was infinitely better. There was just no real heart to this movie, and the story was goofy and sparse. In the beginning of the movie the characters comment about how the gay wedding was so over the top, and to me that kind of summed up the entire movie. The drama seemed forced, as did many of the canned lines, and while we know these characters, I just didn’t really relate to any of them in this movie.
Overall Score 5/10