I went tonight to see the most universally derided and poorest reviewed movie that I can remember. And yes, parts of it were ridiculous. I asked myself more than once “What on earth is she wearing?!” I completely agree that you could see some of the jokes coming from the parking lot. 

That being said, I had a great time.  Because yes, I enjoyed the movie. But let’s face it. No one in their right mind going to see SATC2 was expecting a cinematic masterpiece.  With a movie like this, I’d argue that cinematography doesn’t matter.  I’d even argue that not even plot truly matters.  The thing is, with the SATC franchise, it is just as much about the experience as it is the film itself.

Many women feel some kindred spirit to Carrie, Charlotte, Samantha, and Miranda.  When it was merely a television show, we talked about the previous night’s episode. We made Cosmopolitans and virgin Flirtini’s and hosted viewing parties. We celebrated girl friends as much as we did the series itself.  When the first movie was released, we planned elaborate Girls Night Out events. Husbands, boyfriends, and children were left at home.  The movie was an EVENT.  We had cocktails and/or dinner beforehand. We filed into the theater. We gasped collectively when Big told Carrie he just couldn’t get out of the limo to come into the wedding.  Our hearts ached when Carrie and Miranda fought. More than one of us teared up when Charlotte found herself pregnant. And we all cheered when Carrie and Big finally tied the knot.

And I was satisfied with the resolution of the first film. I felt it told the story. I was skeptical of the second movie. But then I remembered, the movie is only a small part of the event.  Really, it is about time with your girl friends.  So I bought advance tickets to go see the movie opening weekend with my friend Kris.

A rainy Friday night found me in four inch stiletto sandals and a cute top and jeans. Nothing like I would normally wear to a movie.  Yet I wasn’t alone.  At dinner, in the ladies room at the theater, waiting for concessions, filing out after the movie was over, I noticed all the women had dressed up a bit for tonight.  It’s been said more than once that women dress for each other, and I think that is true. It certainly was tonight.  But it was also for ourselves.  We did it because we were inspired by Carrie, Miranda, Charlotte, and Samantha (though, someone, please shoot me if I ever decide to make muffins wearing vintage Valentino).

Collectively, we laughed and gasped and cheered throughout the movie.  We smiled knowingly as Charlotte and Miranda lamented the not so glamorous side of motherhood.  We saw parts of our own relationships as Carrie questioned the sustainability of her marriage as she felt it was falling into a rut.  We laughed together at the silly, obvious jokes, and I’m sure more than one of us grinned at Liza’s take on “All the Single Ladies.”

So critics, go ahead and pan the movie. None of us care.  The movie isn’t what it’s about.  It’s the whole experience. The celebration of our tribe of girlfriends- those who are there no matter whether we’re single or married, a mom or not.  Our sister soul mates.