“Sex and the City” – Susan Granger reviews
As fashionista Carrie Bradshaw (Sarah Jessica Parker) says: “It’s all about labels and love.”
Writer/director Michael Patrick King has adapted his hit HBO show, set in Manhattan three years later. After an angst-ridden 10-year courtship, 40 year-old Carrie is engaged to Mr. Big (Chris Noth). She’s working on her fourth book, searching for “real estate heaven” (i.e.: the perfect closet for Manolo Blahniks, et al) and planning her media-event wedding. Stressed-out Miranda (Cynthia Nixon) is discovering how infidelity can cripple her marriage to Steve (David Eigenberg). Charlotte’s (Kristin Davis) cup runneth over with her adoring husband (Evan Handler) and adopted Chinese daughter when, miraculously, she becomes pregnant. And 50 year-old Samantha (Kim Cattrall), who has relocated to “Lost” Angeles with her actor boy-toy (Jason Lewis), realizes that enduring love simply cannot replace the promiscuous sex she continually craves.
Lacking the savvy wit and snappy pacing of “The Devil Wears Prada,” it’s like several supersized TV episodes strung together – with the women suffering predictable crises that involve heartbreak and forgiveness, sentimentally washed down with Cosmopolitans. To spice up the melancholy, monochromatic mix, Jennifer Hudson (“Dreamgirls”) appears as Carrie’s personal assistant and, not surprisingly, she belts out one of the background songs.
Curiously, what was slyly titillating in half-hour segments becomes silly, superficial and overwhelmingly materialistic when stretched to nearly 2 ½ hours, filled with costumer Patricia Fields’ choice of glossy designer labels, including an opulent Vivienne Westwood wedding gown, topped with a bizarre bird chapeau. Plus blatant branding: Skyy, Glaceau Vitaminwater, Apple, Louis Vuitton, Mercedes-Benz, Coty fragrances, and the Internet’s Bag Borrow or Steal site.
On the Granger Movie Gauge, “Sex and the City: the Movie” is an indulgent, estrogen-propelled 6. Even with R-rated nudity, bigger doesn’t always mean better.