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Women and Hollywood: My Take on Sex and the City

I am not a fan of Sex and the City. I just don't get it. No, really... four women out of control in NYC, are not representative of the whole. These four are just... too outrageous for me.

Okay, I have to admit that I've never watched the show. I've HEARD so darn much about it, it makes me nauseous! (and I don't think Sarah Jessica Parker is any great actress - put her next to Katherine Hepburn or Julia Roberts or Susan Sarandon and, well, you get good acting from the three of them and...play acting from SJP)... Meanwhile, the whole world is caught up in Sex and the City fever.

What the heck...???Babborrowstealandsexandthecity

I'm SOOOOOooo glad Donna wrote about it on this blog, Wednesday. And, I'm so glad she took the approach she did...because I'm beginning to understand a bit better. After reading about the sweepstakes from Bag, Borrow or Steal (gotta love that name - it rolls off the tongue so nicely, and...hey, I'm a big 'gotta have a new purse' gal) and after hearing Donna tell me why she watches the show and will be seeing the movie, I started to rethink my position.

The fact that so many people are in love with this show and eagerly anticipating the movie (my local radio station DJ said a friend of hers was flying to NY for the premier!), I began to wonder if I should give in and see the movie.

Then, I got an email that showed me another perspective...

Eyes_on_the_worldMelissa Silverstein has a fabulous site that follows the ups and downs and ins and outs of the movie biz and how women fit into the mix. Her blog, Women and Hollywood, gives a "feminist perspective" on the Hollywood scene - with commentary well worth your time.

This week she has "A Woman's Cultural Moment" there and here's some of what she says,

"Whatever your thoughts are on the actual content of Sex and the City, as a follower of movies about women I can't help but acknowledge that this is a cultural watershed moment for women's films for a couple of reasons.

  1. Everyone (who talks about movies) has spent the last couple of weeks talking about a film that stars and celebrates women and women's friendships. Indiana Jones is so yesterday's news one week after being released after an almost 20 YEAR WAIT!
  2. Everyone (who talks about movies) is scratching their heads trying to figure out how much money an R rated movie targeted at adult women can make. Imagine women preoccupying the minds of Hollywood's men.
  3. The male misogynists in the film blogosphere have outed themselves in a big way with their extreme nastiness about the film with one actually calling the film a Taliban recruitment film.
  4. This film has sold out almost 400 shows for this weekend.

I wish I could reprint the entire post here...Melissa has really thought this out (that's what she does, though...she follows the movies and where women fit in and I really think you should read more of her blog)...but I want you to go to her blog and read the post. I do not agree with her on SJP's acting abilities, but... I do agree with Harry Medved of Fandango, as noted in Melissa's post, that, "It's unusual for a female driven movie to inspire so much fan anticipation. You would usually associate sold out shows with a comic book movie or a sequel to a summer tentpole. Clearly there is an audience for adult female driven pictures and we are hoping that Hollywood will make more of them. We haven't seen anything like this before."

The folks who make Sex and the City know how to market to women. I thought I was the only woman on the planet that could not care less about it, that previously was apalled by it, and that...will likely not see the movie until I found Sirens. Now I feel vindicated (even though the majority of commenters were against her take on the whole thing...)

Regardless of that, what are the marketers here doing right? What buttons are they pushing? What's behind the Sex and the City adoration?

I know. But, I'm not telling because...you should study this phenomena and figure it out. It will serve you well.

Comments

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One big surprise was how much soft core porn there was in the show. Wowzers! There was a brief male full frontal, several incredibly "liberated" sex scenes and enough skin to keep any viewer titillated.

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I think sometimes women read to much into things. I, for one, loved the movie. I didn't go see it for any life changing reason, just for pure entertainment, and that's what I got out of it!

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ing very enthralling about watching the show with a huge theater of women, all laughing, sighing and booing at the same time. It actually felt very ... uniting.

Mary Humain

I do agree about not fully understanding the whole Sex and the City phenomena. Though, after watching several episodes here and there for a few years, I came to realize it is more about having women connect with "specific" situations from one of the episodes which is happening in their life than it is about the show as a whole.

Susan L Reid of Alkamae

I'm so glad to hear that someone else, besides me, thinks SJP isn't all that great of an actor. She's a one-dimensional actor, IMHO.

Although I haven't seen the movie, I've heard that the best part about the movie is the womaning that occurs, both in the movie and for those who hook up with their girlfriends and go to the movie.

Womaning = the way women get to know other women.

David Reich

Here's one male perspective... I loved the film!

Friday night in the NY City suburbs, I was one of about 10 men in a sold-out theater filled with women. I didn't see it as a chick flick, but a film about friendships.

The women of Sex and the City are over-the-top parodies of singl;e women in NY. I might not choose women like that as good friends, but they're fun wot watch, just as I like The Sopranos but I wouldn't look to be friends with Tony.

I wrote more at http://reichcomm.typepad.com

Yvonne DiVita

Anne-Marie, you prove that there is good reason to see the movie. I may relent.

Donna, you are so right...Carrie would have a blog. But, I probably wouldn't read it. There's a very popular, famous even, woman blogger that reminds me of Carrie...and I dislike her blog a great deal. I never read it.

Still, she has a huge following...so, I'm likely missing the point. As I am with Sex and the City.

Donna DeClemente

Oh, don't tell me too much about the movie...I haven't seen it yet. I asked my husband to go with me and he said he would, but I agree, it will be much more fun to see it with a bunch of girlfriends. So, I'll wait.

Yes, I was trying to bring Yvonne on board, but to each their own. I thought, well Carrie is a writer and you know when the series started there really wasn't a blogoshpere. So, if the series was still on today, I'm sure Carrie would definitely have a blog!

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