Let Them Eat Marzipan!
Flasks with Cosmo: checked
Vivienne Westwood ripoff from Forever 21: checked
BGF (Best Gay Friend/Freak): checked
After letting the boys have their fun last week, the girls are waiting anxiously for the next wave of nostalgia hitting the big screen, and this weekend isn’t going to be that much of a difference: same level of expectations (as low as one can hope for). I guess there’s much to be celebrated about your beloved characters reaching middle age or passing over that hill, from Indy Jones to Samantha of the Fab Four. Or maybe one is secretly mourning and laughing at the same consecutive years spent investing in fiction, and the number of years to come, waiting for that fiction to ripen as realistically as one’s own face, hands, and legs. Our mortality relieved of its final destination if our fantasy take the first step ahead for us. Then again, a popular phenomenon like Gossip Girl performs the opposite effect for the younglings, keeping the cosmopolitan allure but amping up the bitchiness. I bet the same audience who enjoyed SATC became easy converts to the adolescent drama. Interesting though that the core of both shows preaches the everlasting bonds of friendship over guys and luxury.
But while most critics saved their acerbic barbs against SATC‘s exuberant display of elite materialism and faux feminism, what’s more concealed as the larger fantasy is this “interminable bind” between our girlfriends. It’s as if that’s the sacred subject we deem to be (at least) real in this dreamland NYC, not love for labels (though that is true), but love for our friends even as we’re searching for love of a romantic nature. Yet, reality offers an less ideal picture, people come and go, problems erupt, distractions emerge, convenience a reliable glue to safeguard memories too distant to remember and too lazy to search through Facebook.
Hilarious insights from my favorite critics on similar issues of repressed racial typecasting in SATC: If glamour is merely an artifact from the old Hollywood system, refurnished for modern palates, how about the stuff we choose to forget about that innocent era of cigarettes and martinis? (now I sound like Carrie, uggh)
Stephanie Zacharek: Because Carrie is a very busy, very successful, but very disorganized New York writer, she decides she needs an assistant. The woman she hires, Louise (Jennifer Hudson, who gives a likable, openhearted performance), turns out to be a godsend to her…But why make your only adult character of color a wise, capable servant girl? Carrie spends too much time beaming magnanimously at Louise. The effect, unintentional but not dismissible, is a kind of “Mammy, what would I ever do without you?” superiority. (Carrie also gives Louise, as a gift, one of the most hideous bags this side of colostomy paraphernalia.)
Ed Gonzalez: When Jennifer Hudson appears on screen in Sex and the City, the only sane way to respond to the Oscar-winning actress’s performance is with a Homer Simpson-esque shudder, not because Hudson can’t act—most people could tell you that from watching Dreamgirls, in which Hudson’s “soulful” singing was meant to distract (some might say successfully) from reality—but because the American Idol also-ran allows herself to be typecast as a modern-day mammy to Sarah Jessica Parker’s Carrie Bradshaw.
To be continued…after tonight’s crazy-ass screening, listen to Fergie in the meantime.