Sex and the City 2 – Blu-ray Review

It’s almost a guarantee that any popular television series in the last ten to fifteen years will eventually get talked about being turned into a big-screen movie with most of the same cast involved. The only reason to do that is for money, for the most part. Some shows that got the early ax could benefit from having a movie to wrap things up ala Serenity wrapping up an unfinished series in Firefly.

Usually, though, the end of a popular television series does a reasonable enough job of wrapping things up that movie is not necessary. When a sequel to a movie based on a popular television series gets made it has to be ALL about making money, especially with the original cast is still involved. The latest series to get the blatant money-grab sequel treatment is Sex and the City.

Two years after Carrie (Sarah Jessica Parker) found her Mr. Right in Mr. Big (Chris Noth) it appears that the couple has hit a rough patch in their marriage, with the tactless writer wanting more to life than peaceful, reliable domesticity. She is agonized that her husband would rather spend time with his new HD television than with his jewelry-demanding shrew of a wife. Coming to her aid are her trio of friends.

Charlotte (Kristin Davis) is currently suffering the mommy blues when she finds out her nanny (She’s Out of My League‘s Alice Eve) is too attractive. Miranda (Cynthia Nixon) is struggling with her male-dominated workplace and Samantha (Kim Cattrall) is now facing the ravages of menopause. Together they bond over clothes, booze, shoes, vaginal moisturizer and a random trip to Abu Dhabi. There the girls spend their evenings bonding like the lifelong BFFs they are, and their days cheerfully urinating all over sacred Muslim culture.

This film is really two movies combined into one. The first hour of Sex and the City 2 shows us the natural progression of the lives of the Carrie, Miranda, Samantha, and Charlotte. They have all drifted away from their single lives and have gotten married or at least settled down somewhat. This leads to a whole new set of problems. If everyone would have just stuck with those storylines for the majority of the film this movie would have been a lot more watchable. Instead everyone is trying to outdo the first film. The second half of the film sees the girls go on a lavish vacation, which might have been necessary but not with all of the absurdity that overflows and drowns out everything else.

The biggest problem is that the two characters with the most interesting storylines get little time to shine. Carrie has always been the star of the series, but in Sex and the City 2 she is not that likable. She seems to never be satisfied, and appears to only be picking fights with Mr. Big to cause unwanted drama. This, of course, leads to the pointless ex-boyfriend Aiden (John Corbett) drama. Meanwhile, Samantha has become a cartoon character of herself. She has always been about sex, but at least in the television series she showed other sides to her. But not in Sex and the City 2. Miranda and Charlotte get really only one scene together to showcase their storylines. All of this means that is no balance. You just get whiny Carrie and over-sexed and absurd Samantha.

All of that being said, friendship is still a key part of the Sex and the City 2, which is what the entire series is based on. So it’s not all bad but you really have to sit through a lot of junk to get to the good stuff. This is basically just an excuse for everyone involved to cash one last paycheck from this franchise and get a paid vacation to Morrocco while they are at it.

This Blu-ray set contains both the Blu-ray and DVD release of Sex and the City 2 The video on the BD is presented in 1080p VC-1 at the 1.85:1 anamorphic widescreen color ratio, which is enhanced for 16:9 TVs of course. This transfer is great. All of the images and colors look bright and vibrant. The video for the standard definition DVD is presented in anamorphic widescreen color at the 1.85:1 ratio as well. This transfer is great too and about on par with other new release DVDs. There is really not much difference between either version to the average eye, though. No major video problems on either disc.

The audio included on the Blu-ray Disc is available in either English DTS-HD 5.1 Master Surround sound, French DTS-HD 5.1 Master Surround sound, or Spanish DTS-HD 5.1 Master Surround sound. There are subtitles available in English, Spanish, and French as well. The audio included on the standard DVD is available in either English Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround sound, Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround sound or French Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround sound. There are subtitles available in English, Spanish, and French as well. Both discs feature dialogue and music that come out loud and clear. As expected, the Blu-ray Disc sounds a little better than the standard definition DVD, but there is really not much difference between the two versions. No major problems on either disc here either.

Audio Commentary – There is a full-length audio commentary with writer/director Michael Patrick King. It’s basically a big fluffy promotional commentary. He does provide a lot of insight into the making of the film, but it’s not that entertaining.

“Behind the Scenes with Alicia Keys” Featurette – This runs 3 minutes and it’s basically all about the soundtrack of the film. Alicia Keys talks about the films and writing the theme song for the film.

“Revisiting the ’80s” Featurette – This runs 4 minutes and it’s all about the scenes that saw the women go back to the 1980’s. There are interviews with the cast, writer/director Michael Patrick King, and costume designer Patricia Field.

“Marry Me, Liza!” Featurette – This runs 8 minutes and it’s all about making the scenes of the gay wedding sequence. Of course, the spotlight is on Liza Minnelli.

“Styling ‘Sex and the City 2′” Featurette – This runs 15 minutes and it’s more about the outfits used in this film. We talk to costume designer Patricia Field again.

“So Much Can Happen in Two Years” Featurette – This runs 26 minutes and it’s basically a sit-down interview between director/writer, Michael Patrick King and Sarah Jessica Parker. They mainly talk about the character of Carrie.

“The Men of Sex and the City” Featurette – This runs 29 minutes and Michael Patrick King and actor Mario Cantone discuss all of the male characters we have seen throughout the television and film series.

You won’t be missing anything if you decided to not watch this movie. That even goes for fans of the television series. In fact, you are better off NOT watching this film. It might ruin the show for you. It’s not completely horrible, but there is no point to it. So strictly for super hardcore fans of the series.

New Line Home Entertainment presents Sex and the City 2. Directed by Michael Patrick King. Written by Michael Patrick King (screenplay); Candace Bushnell (characters); Darren Star (television series creator). Starring Sarah Jessica Parker, Kim Cattrall, Kristin Davis, Cynthia Nixon, Chris Noth, John Corbett, David Eigenberg, Willie Garson, Evan Handler, Jason Lewis, Mario Cantone, and Alice Eve. Running time: 146 minutes. Rated R. Released on Blu-ray and DVD: October 25, 2010.

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