Yes. I know. It’s a fluff piece/chick flick. This is one of the reasons I watched it online instead of paying to see it. But you know something? It wasn’t as soul-shatteringly awful as some made it sound. It’s the kind of film that needs to be accepted on it’s own terms. It’s not trying to be cerebral high art or breathtaking drama. It’s a summer movie designed as veg-out entertainment, and at that level it succeeds.
Several critics have slammed the film as islamophobic, which to some degree may be valid, and I also agree that it was definitely not essential to set this film in Abu Dhabi, but there’s also another side to this, revealed by the four Arab female characters in who lend Samantha, Charlotte, Carrie, and Miranda their clothing to escape an angry group of conservative men whom Samantha has antagonized by waving the condoms from her thug-overturned handbag in their faces. (You had to be there). This act of kindness on the part of the strangers, who happen to be Muslim women, shows that there are in fact, Muslims who embrace aspects of American fashion/culture, and that to the extent that it is possible to individualize and westernize Islam, there are those willing to do so.
A female co-worker made a very excellent point about gender with respect to how this film is being criticized. Why are similar films which depict a group of bumbling guys having ridiculous adventures less severely criticized than this one? Remember The Hangover? Hot Tub Time Machine?
Will the upcoming film Grown Ups get the same almost universal panning? It will probably get some, but I wonder whether the dislike will be as intense as it has been for Sex and the City 2?
Lighten up people. If you’re not in the mood for a fluff piece, don’t go to see one, if you are, don’t expect to be intellectually challenged.
Examiner – post by Scott Wampler – although he doesn’t praise this film by any means, he, too wonders at the intense animosity leveled at it.
Daily Mail – interesting assessment of the hoopla
Wichita Eagle – a fair assessment of the film
Amanda Mull’s -defense of the film
Manohla Dargis’ – defense in the NY Times