"Sex and the City 2" loses zing but still lures fans

Thu May 27, 2010 7:15pm EDT
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By Christine Kearney

NEW YORK (Reuters) - "Sex and the City" may have lost the scandalous story lines and antics that once left fans both shocked and delighted, but box office experts and devotees predict that won't stop fans flocking to the movie sequel.

Women around the world are prepping their wardrobes for cocktail nights out and planning brunches and beauty treatments timed to watch Carrie Bradshaw and her three gal pals return in "Sex and the City 2," that begins its worldwide roll-out on Thursday and opens in more than 30 countries by next week.

Similar to the first movie, many U.S. reviews have been less than flattering. USA Today called it a "mortifying mess", New York magazine "an epic eyesore," and the Los Angeles Times said "the satire is sagging, the irony's atrophied and the funny is flabby."

A few reviews were more positive. The Hollywood Reporter, for one, said the sequel has "more cutting edge humor" than the first film and for "the core audience, there will be no complaints about too much of a good thing. This picture is going to be a smash."

The first movie about four New York City women dealing with life and love raked in more than $415 million worldwide, and box office watchers expect solid ticket sales.

"Even if the movie is terrible, women don't care," said Hollywood.com box office analyst Paul Dergarabedian. It's an event...and I think for a lot of women, this is their 'Star Wars.' These are the characters that they love."

Weeks before the debut, advance tickets were snapped up with more than 50 percent of early online ticket sales going in blocks of four or more, said Dergarabedian, "which means women are going in groups, they're making a girls night out of it, and that's music to the studio's ears, no question about it."


<p>Actresses (From L-R) Sarah Jessica Parker, Kristin Davis, Kim Catrall and Cynthia Nixon pose for photographers at the premiere of their new film "Sex and the City 2" in Leicester Square, London May 27, 2010. REUTERS/Kieran Doherty</p>