This movie is
so extremely “chicky-flicky” that it will struggle to attract any male
viewers at all, but perhaps this niche market is so strong that it doesn’t
really need the males, which, actuall
y, is part
of the point.
As in all
chick flicks, the primary character is a woman, and the man is secondary,
absent, distracted, useless, pitiable, emasculated, loathsome, or some loose
combination of the above. Greg Kinnear, who plays the husband, is about as
manly as a pearl necklace. Sure, he’s faithful, loyal, almost always happy,
and occasionally cuddly, kind of like the family dog. He’ll even bark
occasionally, but when he does, he’s usually reprimanded for it.
The story is
all about how the main character (played with brisk efficiency by Sarah
Jessica Parker) tries to juggle and career and family responsibilities, which
makes her feel that she does neither very well, but they’re so many women
like her that identification with her will be all but automatic. Of course,
Sarah Jessica Parker is also skinny, rich, famous, and a walking fashion show,
which might work to alienate her potential audience, but wait, she was all
those things in her years on “Sex and The City,” as well, and since those
targeted ads were usually for perfume and hair spray, one has to assume that
her loyal followers didn’t resent her success, but rather, idolized it. She
even reprises her narration overdubs.
character is the “career” woman who doesn’t have time for the messiness
of children, and doesn’t have much use for men, either. Rather pointedly,
she’s Parker’s assistant, not the other way around. But when she suddenly
announces her pregnancy, there’s still no need for a man around, even to
help raise the child. And seeing that on the big screen makes it OK for
everyone, right? Or was it the other way around?
“evil” character is the rich, married “kept” woman who whines from her
daily rounds at the upscale gym that the other mothers don’t do their part
in making homemade cookies for the school bake sale. This is supposed to
represent the superficiality and snootiness that “real” working women
supposedly loathe, but may actually be envious of the leisurely lifestyle.
value” folks are supposed to like this movie, because it re-affirms the
importance of marriage (though a matriarchal version of it, because she makes
all the decisions, and, after all, it’s all about her). The only “racy”
element is characterized by the flirtatious, leering interest of a suave,
sophisticated, successful client (Pierce Brosnan), who, rather than be
condemned as a pervert or sued as a harasser, is instead adroitly referred to
someone more eligible.No harm, no
The truth is,
when you see the trailers, you’ve seen the movie. It delivers its title.
Dr. Ronald P.
Salfen, Interim Pastor, St. Stephen’s Presbyterian Church, Irving Texas