Monday, May 31, 2010

Movie Review: Is "Sex and the City 2" Really That Bad?

Sex and the City 2

I have to admit, the trailers for Sex and the City 2 looked really bad -- why are they going to a desert? And then came the critics' reviews. Most were unfavorable. But is the movie THAT bad? I say, no. Any fan of the original HBO series and subsequent 2008 hit movie will surely find some joy in the sequel. Although not as funny as the original -- and way too long at nearly two-and-a-half hours -- it's still a blast catching up with Carrie (Sarah Jessica Parker), Samantha (Kim Cattrall), Charlotte (Kristin Davis) and Miranda (Cynthia Nixon). And, of course, the men in their lives and their other passions -- as they settle into middle age (yipes!). The bottom line -- once again, the strong actresses rise above a so-so script.

Writer/director/producer Michael Patrick King probably could have found a better setting for the bulk of the movie -- but he chose Abu Dhabi (though actually filmed in Morocco) because he needed a place where excess and richness were allowed. How else to show off $50,000 dresses? With a recession still raging at home, New York City was out of the question. But sadly, it's the Big Apple that added so much of the charm to the series. That's why it's in the title. Instead, the trip to the desert added too much silliness -- and the parodied Muslim customs often missed the mark.

Still, there are enough humor-filled and touching moments to recommend that fans ignore the critics -- and revisit with some old friends. Also stars the excellent returning cast of Chris Noth, John Corbett, David Eigenberg, Evan Handler, Jason Lewis, Willie Garson and Mario Cantone. With cameos by Liza Minelli, Penélope Cruz , Tim Gunn and Miley Cyrus. [Rated R; in theaters now]

Grade: B

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