Thursday, July 31, 2008

SIBLING RIVALRY



Tonight I attended the LA premiere of The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants 2. Eric worked on some of the casting, and was invited - plus one - to see his name in the credits of a film for the very first time. I can't even begin to explain how enormously proud I am of him.

Now, I'm a big fan of the first SisterPants movie. I saw it in the theaters, I dragged my boyfriend at the time, and I cried. I won't deny any of this - I love this movie. Sadly, the sequel didn't quite "get me there" the way the original did. One of my biggest problems was the pacing. The first 3/4 of it felt completely disjointed. They cut from girl to girl, story to story, location to location...but it didn't feel as natural or organic as it did before. It felt like they were trying to cram in a lot of backstories from the books without having to fully develop any of them. Thankfully, Rob - being the amazing roommate that he is - has read all of the books and was able to brief me beforehand that the screenplay for SisterPants2 was comprised of plots from the latter 3 books in the series. So right off the bat, there's a lot of ground to cover.


Bridget (Serena Van Der Woodsen) apparently isn't as apeshit crazy for soccer anymore - now she's studying archeology for the summer in Turkey! Lena (Rory Gilmore) still likes to get her art on, and travels back and forth to Greece more than a boat full of oily sailors. Tibby (Joan of Arcadia) is still a bitch, and goes to NYU to force her shitty student films on an unsuspecting public. And last but not least is our narrator, Carmen (Ugly Betty) who has basically become that friend you had growing up that resented you for moving on with your life...while they hung around waiting for you to realize that the entire universe revolved around the friendship you forged when you were in kindergarten. They still have their thing with the pants, but it's made clear nearly from the get-go that at least 3 of the 4 girls are a little tired of the tradition. Fighting ensues.



It's not hard to see some of the action onscreen as believable. Before filming had even started, each actress comprising the sisterhood expressed NO interest in making a sequel. Not exactly a recipe for warmth and togetherness on set. The thing is, I could feel it happening onscreen, that as the characters drifted further apart from each other, the actresses were just trying to get it over and done with...so they could separate themselves from the franchise as well. The end result is sad for fans of SisterPants1 and the books (I'd imagine). Naturally, some friends in life do grow apart. But seeing as how the entire basis for this series is the strong bonds of friendship - is that really the message they should be conveying? It's all wrapped up in a sweet little ribbon by the end, but I couldn't help but feel a little disappointed. It's not-so-shocking rhetoric that as all of the actresses have been exposed as monster cunts (except for Joan of Arcadia...I don't think she's in the position to complain about anything) - the sisterhood begins to exhibit some of the same characteristics. Regardless, here are a few of the film's highlights:



- Blythe Danner as Bridget's estranged grandmother, with one of the worst southern-accents ever to grace the screen since Julia Roberts in Steel Magnolias

- Hot Black Guy as Leo, Lena's barely-developed love interest (who fortunately happens to pose nude for her art class)

- Kyle McClachlan as Carmen's theater camp professor, who's desire to "put on a great show" did nothing but remind me of his character in Showgirls

- Rachel Nichols as Carmen's theater camp roommate, waxing a little more "Alexa" from Sex and the City than "Rachel" from Alias

Overall, I'd say that I liked it...but certainly didn't love it. There really wasn't a need to get the gang together for another round - especially when no one involved was really interested, with the exception of Warner Bros.