August 6, 2008

The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants 2

What I liked best about the first Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants was the great relationship between four different and not typically Hollywood looking actresses, America Ferrara, Amber Tamblyn, Blake Lively and Alexis Bledel. These young women came across as really truly loving and supporting one another. But, sadly, what was so evident in the first film was missing in the second as the young women departed their home town for college and the sisterhood was tested by distance.

I applaud the women power from director Sanaa Hamri to screenwriter Elizabeth Chandler to producers Debra Martin Chase and Denise Di Novi, I just wished there were more scenes with the young women together. What I did love is that each of the young women is undeniably a unique spirit. Tibby (Amber Tamblyn) is a filmmaker, Lena (Alexis Bledel) is an artist, Bridget (Blake Lively) is a soccer player and Carmen (America Ferrara) works in the theatre. Not very typical for young women in the movies today.

Since the film is targeted at young women and tweens, I felt it could have better handled the condom "malfunction" situation when Tibby has sex for the first time with her boyfriend. This young woman who moments before had self-identified as a feminist completely loses it and goes to a deep dark place assuming the worst. Now I know she's young and emotional but this was an opportunity to educate young women, so instead of availing herself of all her options, this strong smart, self-confident woman spends half the movie in a state when every time she sees a baby she looks like she wants to die. This storyline made me quite angry. It could have been handled in a more responsible manner without even having to utter the word abortion or heaven forbid having her get a morning after pill. Now I know I live in progressive "Melissaland" but they could have done something, anything but they decided to have her pout and freak out for much of the movie.

Other than that lapse which most people probably won't care about as much as me, the strong female friendships that survive and thrive even through long distance is still a big plus and what makes this film worthy for young women and girls.

photo credit: Phil Caruso