Saturday, August 16, 2008

Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants: 2

I just read a really interesting movie review. It's for "Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants: 2", a movie I recently saw that's currently in theaters. I enjoyed the first "Sisterhood" movie, but I didn't like the second one as much. Always one to harp on a detail, I was aggravated by the fact that the characters weren't able to voice the words "condom", "period", or, God-forbid, "emergency contraception". It also seemed more unrealistic and choppy than the first film. But Jessica Reaves of the Chicago Tribune says:

In the current popular culture, female friendships—at any age—are generally considered secondary to life's "important" relationships, the romantic bonds between men and women. Nowhere is this depressing trend more evident than in Hollywood, where story lines putatively about women's friendships tend toward the saccharine ("Mona Lisa Smile"), the malicious ("Mean Girls") or the boy-crazy (take your pick). Which is why it's such a pleasure (and a relief) to encounter movies such as " The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants 2." Like the first "Pants" movie, it presents its heroines' relationships as complicated, challenging and particularly rewarding, and not simply as a vehicle for finding the perfect boyfriend.


Nothing about this movie feels revolutionary, but don't let its easy charm fool you. Like its predecessor, "Sisterhood 2" is based on two radical ideas: namely, that young women's stories are about more than the pursuit of men, and that happiness isn't something someone else gives you—it's something you have to find for yourself.

I find it immensely sad that this is a "radical" idea. I wish I could say with certainty that it's only radical at the box office, but I'm not sure if that's the case. And how radical was it really, when 3 out of the 4 characters have life-changing experiences involving men? In Carmen [America Ferrara]'s storyline, a handsome British boy appears out of the wings of a theater and inspires her to achieve her true potential. As usual, women are steadfast companions, but men are catalysts for change. And that's an old chestnut. Can't we please be radical once we've started being radical?

I remember quoting another blog in my post on buddy movies. The author said that we should go see "Baby Mama", even if we think we'll hate the movie, because we need to show Hollywood that female-fronted films can make money.
But I'm conflicted about the idea of sacrificing $10.50 for a movie I may not enjoy, or telling others to do so. I want to see more movies like "Sisterhood", but if a movie doesn't "feel revolutionary", is anyone (besides chronic overthinkers) going to get that it is?

And in other pseudo-news, happy belated birthday to Asexy Beast! I started this blog on August 11th, 2007. Thank you all so much for coming this far with keep reading, and I'll keep writing! (And of course, it works the other way, too. I'm nothing short of thrilled to be reading so many fellow asexy blogs. Keep writing!)


Heidi said...

Happy birthday! And thank you for a year's worth of delightfully asexy posts =) I'm not a movie goer, as human stupidity, trivial entertainment, blatantly sexual nonsense where none is needed, and general materialism aren't my thing... so thanks for pointing out that an occasional movie strays from the norm. Must say that Amelie kind of rocked the asexualness too, though.

Ily said...

Thanks! (And I love Amelie!)

Superquail said...

I think the reviewer's idea of "radical" is really lame. "Happiness isn't something someone gives you"? No way!