Sunday, June 08, 2008


Sex and the City

I saw the new Sex and the City movie yesterday. I should start by saying these:

  1. I saw the entire TV series, and loved it.
  2. I haven’t been following the reviews of the movie. I was going to see it, no matter what the reviews said, and I expected to like it.
  3. I’ve heard that if you have a Y chromosome, you’re pretty much required to bash the movie. I just don’t get that.

That is, I don’t get the whole anti-SatC thing among many men. Men who’ve seen it and say they hate it often seem to have seen a different movie than I did. Men who’ve not seen it and say they hate it make me wonder how one can try to talk with any intelligence about someone one hasn’t seen. It’s certainly OK to say, as I say that I expected to like it, that you expect to hate it and have therefore chosen not to see it. So, sure, say that.

If you do, you’ll miss an amusing movie. It’s not great cinema. It’s not deep, it’s not arty, it’s not transcendental. It won’t change your life. It’s a fun two and a half hours, whether or not you understand the concept of paying a thousand dollars for a pair of shoes, or five thousand for a handbag.

I did enjoy it. I enjoyed the story of four fictional women and their fictional lives. Perhaps the mistake of its detractors is that they try to read too much reality into the fiction. But through the fiction, it shows us lots of bits of reality, stuff that rings true as discrete points — stuff about friendships, relationships, fighting and resolving our conflicts; stuff about being independent and about relying on people we love; stuff about getting through life with our sanity intact.

If anything bothered me about the movie, it was that it had less “punch” than the TV series did. On TV, they had half an hour to work through a topic, the theme of the episode. 30 minutes to play with one aspect of sex, love, friendship, relationship, and life... while developing the characters and the situations for the next episode. In the movie, the writers had to make five half-hours all work together as one block, and I think that dulled the edge a bit.

And, yes, that’s the worst I can say about it. It was silly in bits, sad in bits, happy in bits, and in the whole, a fun afternoon, chilling in an air conditioned cinema on a 95-degree New York day.

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