Sex and the City

Sex and the City

There’s no question that vehemently protesting a big screen version of a beloved television series has become so commonplace that it’s now simply a cliché, but when it comes to Sex and the City, it’s not as easy as loudly screaming “NO NO NO” and plugging one’s ears. It’s complicated. It’s messy. It’s stupid. In short, it’s a lot like the show’s very dubious cinematic legacy. HBO’s calling card series spawned six television seasons and two feature films, all of which featured the same cast of leading ladies (Sarah Jessica Parker, Cynthia Nixon, Kim Catrall, and Kristin Davis), and the continued use of Michael Patrick King’s talents (King both executive produced and wrote on the series, before moving on to write and direct both feature films, giving them the sort of continuity of theme and emotion that should have made them both great). While the first film, 2008’s not-so-cleverly named Sex and the City did big business and helped further the story laid out in the series (to jog your memory, it focused on the ill-fated wedding of Carrie and Mr. Big and its wrenching aftermath), the second feature film (2010’s Sex and the City 2) made just about every mistake possible, earning both a crushing 15% rating on Rotten Tomatoes and nearly sixty million dollars less than its predecessor at the box office. So, yes, by all means, let’s make another one! Rumors about a third cinematic installment of the series have long swirled, but a recent interview with […]

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The Bridge

Here’s one of my pet peeves: critics describing the setting of a TV show or film as a “character,” the way Manhattan was routinely called a “fifth character” in Sex and the City. Describing a location as a “character” is supposed to be a compliment — it means the writers, set designers, and directors have done their job of building a convincing world — but to me it usually just sounds like a disparagement of TV shows and films that don’t bother to feature a unique background. The current “golden age of television,” which dawned after a conspicuous New Yorkification and Californization of the TV landscape in the 1990s, has largely taken place outside of the five boroughs and the Golden State. The Sopranos, the herald of the prestige cable drama era, took place in northern New Jersey — geographically close but culturally far from the big city. Breaking Bad has achieved brilliant cinematography in New Mexico, while The Wire and Friday Night Lights accomplished in-depth explorations of why Baltimore and the fictional town of Dillon, Texas, are the way they are. Justified gets great mileage out of its unique and detailed portrayal of Harlan County. All the above shows were filmed on location — enriching TV as a visual medium. Even Mad Men, The Shield, and Sex and the City, which do take place in America’s two cultural capitals, have grander ambitions regarding their settings. The action in those shows takes place mostly in relatively small neighborhoods of their respective cities. Thus, Don Draper’s Manhattan isn’t Jerry Seinfeld’s. Vic Mackey’s LA isn’t even in the same universe as Beverly Hills, […]

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SATC

Though it ended its television run nearly a decade ago, HBO’s Sex and the City still remains the gold standard in female-driven ensemble sex-coms (just imagine the Hollywood pitches that include the line “It’s like Sex and the City, but in [fill in city here]!”) and, for better or worse, the series is still relevant to television today. Hell, the Sex and the City tour business is still booming in New York City, complete with cupcakes and cosmos. While I wasn’t a first-run fan of SATC and, though I knew plenty of people (mostly women) who thought it represented some sort of canonistic experience for gals of a certain age in a certain type of city, I never felt that way. SATC may have felt like aspirational entertainment to some – even now, living in New York City in a lovely apartment that actually has bedrooms, I still think Carrie’s studio is awesome – but it doesn’t even remotely present a realistic view on life in the big city (especially New York City). Nevertheless, SATC is a constant source of background television viewing for me, along with Friends and Seinfeld, and it continues to play out in syndicated form across a number of different television channels. What I’m saying is, the show is still on a lot, and it’s often on a lot within my viewing range. I’ve seen every episode of SATC by now – and multiple times – and I have even endured both of the feature films […]

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Girls

Having drawn (incredibly poor, it has to be noted, though damn if Shoshanna isn’t like a new wave Charlotte) comparisons to Sex and the City since the day it premiered, it seems only inevitable that Lena Dunham’s HBO series Girls is now the subject (victim?) of its own “totally unauthorized and unofficial” walking tour in Greenpoint, Brooklyn. Yesterday, Dunham herself Instagrammed a picture of a flyer (you can see it after the break) touting the tour that was apparently heartily taped to some sort of utility pole, presumably somewhere in Brooklyn (where Dunham lives). She amusingly captioned the ‘gram “Sign me uppp!!!” We like you, Lena. The tour’s flyer promises that you will accomplish the following during your tour of Greenpoint: “find out where Hannah whips up cappuccinos, tour the playgrounds of McGorlick Park, gawk at the exterior of an apartment building where Adam Driver’s character bench presses iron, discover where cast and crew have martinis after the last shot of the day (no pun intended!).” There are also notes about getting “insider tips” on how to make your own Tiny Furniture and a tempting offer for free Pabst Blue Ribbons. There is no way this tour is real. To reiterate: this tour promises to take you to the outside of an apartment building and then get you drunk on cheap beer. They also promise that you’ll get to hold a Golden Globe for a souvenir photo, which raises the question: just where did these wily tour operators get a […]

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Amy Heckerling has been developing the habit of making movies about once a generation that perfectly encapsulates the zeitgeist of current youth culture. In the early ’80s, it was her film Fast Times at Ridgemont High that gave high school kids all over the world the idea to have pizzas delivered to their classrooms and made that one Cars song be forever linked with Phoebe Cates taking off her top. In the mid-’90s she brought us Clueless, which introduced the world to how cute Paul Rudd is when he sheepishly grins and finally asked a lost generation to pull up their pants and stop looking like trashballs. So now that it’s 2012 and Heckerling has written and directed a new film, you have to ask yourself if it’s going to be another one of those generation defining moments in movies, or if it’s just going to end up being another Look Who’s Talking? Her new project is called Vamps, and seeing as it’s a little late to cash in on the vampire crazy, its chances of becoming a big thing are already looking kind of dicey. That doesn’t mean it won’t be fun though, because it has a completely ridiculous cast, and a plot that sounds tailor-made for getting everyone’s girlfriends to squeal.

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Aural Fixation - Large

Bringing a beloved (or at least nostalgia inducing) television show to the big screen is no easy undertaking (especially for shows that have been off the air for a few good years.) The task of adapting existing material (whether it be from a book series, a comic book or a well-known public figure) can be daunting as you hope to live up to expectations while also trying cultivate new fans. When it comes to turning a television show into a film, having a few well placed cameos from the original cast, rooting the film in a story true to that show’s world and (seeing as many of these shows were comedies) not letting the film version take itself too seriously seem to be the keys to these adaptation’s success. With Phil Lord and Chris Miller’s updated 21 Jump Street taking to the silver screen this weekend, I realized that the one thing all these shows have in common (regardless of when they aired, who starred in them or what they were about) is also the one element that many television shows on air today have done away with – a catchy theme song.

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As a woman, there are certain things I am expected to always want – chocolate, shoes, bad boys, and more Sex and the City. As a human being with eyes, ears, a heart, and passable taste, there is one thing I will never want – more Sex and the City. The seminal HBO series, based on Candace Bushnell’s book of the same name, ran for six years and ninety-four episodes. It is single-handedly responsible for the unearned fame of a bad cupcake place in the Village, the use of the term “Post-It breakup” in pop culture vernacular, and the predilection of some women to get drunk on pink vodka-based beverages and scream that they are “a Carrie!” or “a Charlotte!” or “a Samantha, hahaha, because I am a skank!” It was a movement, people, its own cultural zeitgeist. It spawned two feature films, the second of which was so poorly received critically that it essentially stopped any and all plans for a third film (if we are lucky enough).

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New York City is covered in romantic qualities. Be them personal experiences romping through the city in the middle of the night with a cute boy you met on the elevator, absorbing yourself in a different culture around every corner, or because you just straight up watch too many films without having ever visited one of the five boroughs. New York is a city of dreams, schemers, and downtrodden, but each person who experiences the island knows the pull and excitement of this crazy-making place. Otherwise, there wouldn’t be films and shows where Manhattan is featured as prominently as any actor or actress on screen. The fantasy of New York is more than just Times Square and Central Park, it’s feeling like you belong there. Film fills that gaping hole in the hearts of those who cannot live in the city, but who want to explore the possibility. You (rightfully so) can’t have sex in the back of a cab, but that’s okay because Sex and the City has you covered. You can also feel like you’re canoodling on a park bench at 1 AM while watching About Last Night. It’s quite possible most people have some sort of big city public sex item on their Fuck-It List, and most of those ideas come from the films we’ve watched.

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What is Movie News After Dark? This is a question that I am almost never asked, but I will answer it for you anyway. Movie News After Dark is FSR’s newest late-night secretion, a column dedicated to all of the news stories that slip past our daytime editorial staff and make it into my curiously chubby RSS ‘flagged’ box. It will (but is not guaranteed to) include relevant movie news, links to insightful commentary and other film-related shenanigans. I may also throw in a link to something TV-related here or there. It will also serve as my place of record for being both charming and sharp-witted, but most likely I will be neither of the two. I write this stuff late at night, what do you expect?

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The constant fear that the world has been living in for the past few months has finally lifted. The dread and avoidance of all things movie news related has subsided. A decent meal and the sunshine is waiting for everyone on the surface. For today, like a house dropping out of the clouds and onto a film franchise, Kristin Davis has announced that she believes there won’t be another Sex and the City movie. “I could be wrong,” she admits. “Obviously there was a time when we thought there was no movie happening so you never know. But it is not looking great.” It’s not looking great because the movie had box office trouble domestically and was not well-liked by critics or fans. It just goes to show – you can sneak by the critics, but you can’t piss off the ones who brought you to the dance. For now, let’s soldier on with cautious optimism. A new day is dawning, and it tolls the bell signaling a future without another Sex and the City movie. The future looks bright. [E!]

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Sex and the City

I’m not quite sure why I decided to watch Sex and the City in its entirety. It could have been my curiosity about the show, or my desire to put Sex and the City 2 in some fair context in an Internet blogging landscape overwhelmingly composed of male writers and male readers, or maybe I was seeking out some sort of endurance test…or maybe all these are lame excuses to shamelessly justify watching a show that one would so easily encounter ridicule for watching.

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The romantic comedy is, in many ways, as “pure” as genre as there ever was one, as it requires the strict adherence to owning up on an audience’s specific set of expectations – you know going in that the two central characters are going to end up together, the slight variation (and appeal) of the genre takes place in the journey to that anticipated point.

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Fat Guys at the Movies

While Neil heads off to Dubai with his three BFFs to drink cosmos, shop in the marketplace and challenge Middle Eastern decency laws, Kevin invites fellow Fat Guys Fozzie Bare into the Magical Studio in the Sky to be a guest host, talking Sex and the City 2 and Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time

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Sex and the City 2

Sex and the City was never intended for my demographic, but I refuse to fault it for that, for in critiquing those media objects not intended for us, we must be careful not to confuse preferences of taste with quality.

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At first, I wanted to explore and ask the question of What Can Studios Do To Market to Women, but that seemed cruel and calculated. Instead, I’d like to know what the intelligent, female movie-goer wants.

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A cultural icon is about to bring his terrorist asskicking to a theater near you.

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turnedon-hankssleepless

What is turning Bethany Perryman on this week? Your questions. She answers everything from going way downtown to what cinematic Rico Suaves you should be studying before your next night on the town.

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Test your boyfriend.

Love is in the air for some reason, so we’ve developed a fool-proof way of testing whether your significant other is worth your time. Now for girls!

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sex-header1

Just when you thought you were safe from the Sex and the City women, they’re back. They’re back like the shark in Jaws, Chucky, Jason, Freddie and every other scary character who haunts the cinema.

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DVDs I Bought This Week!

Brian Gibson loves to buy DVDs. Come with him on his weekly journey into the depths of credit card debt as he tells you what to buy, rent and avoid.

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published: 10.30.2014
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published: 10.29.2014
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published: 10.27.2014
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published: 10.24.2014
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