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Movie Review

The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants 2

MPAA Rating: PG-13 for mature material and sensuality.

Reviewed by: Thaisha Geiger

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Moviemaking Quality:

Primary Audience:
Adventure, Comedy, Drama, Romance
1 hr. 47 min.
Year of Release:
USA Release:
August 6, 2008 (wide)
DVD release: November 18, 2008
Copyright, Alcon / Warner Bros. Pictures Copyright, Alcon / Warner Bros. Pictures Copyright, Alcon / Warner Bros. Pictures Copyright, Alcon / Warner Bros. Pictures Copyright, Alcon / Warner Bros. Pictures Copyright, Alcon / Warner Bros. Pictures Copyright, Alcon / Warner Bros. Pictures Copyright, Alcon / Warner Bros. Pictures Copyright, Alcon / Warner Bros. Pictures Copyright, Alcon / Warner Bros. Pictures
Relevant Issues
Copyright, Alcon / Warner Bros. Pictures
Films in this series

The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants” (2005)

The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants 2” (2008)

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Featuring: Amber Tamblyn, America Ferrera, Blake Lively, Alexis Bledel
Director: Sanaa Hamri
Producer: Debra Martin Chase, Denise Di Novi, Broderick Johnson, Kira Davis, Andrew A. Kosove, Christine Sacani, Alison Greenspan, Leslie Morgenstein, Bob Levy
Distributor: Alcon / Warner Bros. Pictures

After the modest success of the first Sisterhood movie, a sequel was made based on the fourth and final book of the best-selling series. Two years have past, and the girls are now all in separate colleges, embarking on their new lives.

Tibby is in NYU pursuing her film degree. She and Brian are now in a serious relationship. While Tibby’s still emotionally reserved, Bryan makes it well known how much he loves her. After a pregnancy scare, Tibby quickly breaks up with him. Lena is in Rhode Island with a scholarship to an art school. After attending her grandfather’s funeral in Greece, she runs into Costos. Before she can explain the reason for their breakup, he introduces Lena to his wife. Heartbroken, Lena moves on to date Leo. These two friends must decide where to lead their lives, where to move on or to continue loving the men who claim their hearts.

Still suffering a strained relationship with her father, Bridget gets accepted to an archaeological dig in Turkey. Right before she leaves, she finds the letters her grandmother has been writing to her for over twelve years. Bridget gets tired of running and goes to Alabama to meet her grandmother. On the way, she learns about herself and her mother. Carmen is sad that her once cherished life is moving along without her. Her mother is now remarried and expecting a baby. Her lifelong friends do not really care about staying home for the summer or continuing the pants ritual. Frustrated by their apparent indifference, Carmen decides to go to Vermont where she meets a handsome British actor and surprisingly lands the lead role to a Shakespearian play.

The sequel tries to cover much more than the first film. I felt that the film was rushed at times. It would quickly jump scenes to the different friends. While the transitions were not confusing, some character development was missed. Tibby’s and Carmen’s stories were my favorites, as they were the most rounded. As a result, Bridget’s and Lena’s stories were sacrificed. The audience never gets to see Bridget’s potentially mended relationship with her father. Lena’s relationship with Leo is dropped from the storyline without further explanation.

The romances seemed a bit too syrupy and unbelievable, but I did enjoy the message of true friendship in the film.

While Carmen was upset with her friends’ different priorities, she decides to make practicing for the play her main focus. When Tibby comes in need of a friend, Carmen coldly brushes her off. During her dress rehearsal, Carmen’s mother goes into premature labor. Desperate, Carmen calls Tibby. Without any resentment or anger, Tibby quickly rushes to the hospital. I loved how Tibby quickly forgave her friend and helped her in her time of need. Forgiveness is such an essential part of being a Christian, and it was refreshing to see an example of this in a Hollywood film.

Offensive content

As for language, the movie only has three misuses of the word “hell” and one ba__rd. The reason I rated the profanity moderate (rather than low) was because the Lord’s name is said in vain at least 23 times.

The first film in the series was only rated PG; however, this sequel is rated PG-13 for the increase in sexual references. Lena takes a drawing class where she draws a nude model. Since it was her first time, and she was nervous, the nude model, Leo, asks her if she’s a “virgin” to the figure drawing. The camera lingers on his physique; it shows his chest, torso, and lower legs.

Some cleavage is shown throughout the movie. While Carmen was helping backstage in some Victorian play, the lead actress’ breasts were pushed up and very revealed. Tibby also wears some low-cut attire.

In the beginning of the film, Tibby and her boyfriend Brian decide to have sex for the first time. It shows them kissing, and he takes off his shirt. The next scene shows Tibby topless with a sheet covering her. It then shows Brian with a towel wrapped around his waist. The director wanted to make known that Brian, too, has a physique. After explaining to Tibby that the condom broke, she becomes terrified.

Although Tibby does have sex in the movie, it is portrayed in a bad light. After the pregnancy scare, she starts seeing babies everywhere and asks some thoughtful questions to her friends. She wonders why she is being punished for feeling too much and wishes she could take back that one night with Brian. Bridget also goes through her share of questions and sorrow. During a tearful scene, Bridget asks her grandmother why her mom left her all alone and why she had to commit suicide. Her grandmother told her it was because her mom was too sick and too sad. In short, it was a hopeless situation.

There are so many people in the world who are certain that they are in hopeless situations. They often buy self-help books to solve the mystery of how to be truly happy. Scripture has the complete answer and is often overlooked. God has “made known to us the mystery of his will according to his good pleasure, which he purposed in ChristEphesians 1:9.

Only after knowing God’s will for us through His son Jesus, we then know the everlasting secret to true happiness. Paul wrote in Philippians:

“I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do everything through Him who gives me strength.”

If you were a fan of the first movie, then I am fairly confident you will be at least somewhat satisfied with this film. However, I believe this movie is only suitable for older children. In this case, the film is appropriately rated. A discussion of the movie and God’s word should be required afterwards. One should instruct their children in how going against God, if only once, can have life-changing consequences. The theme of forgiveness and not seeking revenge should also be discussed.

Violence: None / Profanity: Moderate / Sex/Nudity: Moderate

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Movie Critics
…I can't think of another film so frankly dealing with what we expect from friendship, so tenderly showing how friends can fail in one area, yet be there in another. This isn't ‘Mean Girls;’ it's ‘Keen Girls,’ with standout performances from Ferrera and Tamblyn, each of whom expresses more with an arched eyebrow than most actresses can with their entire bodies. …
—Carrie Rickey, Philadelphia Inquirer
…whereas the first film presented the titular pants as a force that united its characters in shared female experience, such an impression is here routinely thwarted by a fantasyland-set script that jumps erratically between exotic locales, pressing dilemmas and tumultuous emotions, not to mention has a habit of wrapping up serious situations through flippantly easy shortcuts.
—Nick Schager, Slant Magazine
…is everything that ‘Sex and the City’ wanted to be. It follows the lives of four women, their career adventures, their romantic disasters and triumphs, their joys and sadness. These women are all in their early 20s, which means they are learning life’s lessons; ‘SATC’ is about forgetting them. …
—Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times
…The sequel takes a lighter tone with its subject matter (birth rather than death, family reunions versus families breaking apart), but does so with a more adult execution, with fewer pop songs in the soundtrack and fewer syrupy new-boyfriend montages. …
—Chris Knight, National Post
…while their friendships are worth imitating, many of their other choices aren't…
—Lindy Keffer, Plugged In
…a sweet, sentimental and occasionally funny movie… never boring because of the skill of this cast. …
—McClatchy, Pittsburgh Tribune-Review