THE SISTERHOOD OF THE TRAVELING PANTS2 stars Amber Tamblyn (daughter of the beloved Russ Tamblyn, star of Wonderful World of the Brothers Grimm, West Side Story, Tom Thumb, and other films), America Ferrera (of "Ugly Betty" fame), Blake Lively, and Alexis Bledel (looks like Keira Knightly, but not emaciated). This is one of my all-time-favorite movies, mostly because of its celebration of people who devote themselves to the arts.
As with Pants-1, the film uses a pair of patched blue jeans as a device that provides a unifying feature to the story. Each girl wears the blue jeans for a while, then mails the blue jeans to the next girl, and the film follows the adventures of each girl in succession. The movie starts with a purse-snatching, but then the camera pans to the right, and we see a movie camera filming the purse-snatching (the purse-snatching was all an act).
Ms. Ferrera, a Yale undergrad has kinds of things going on in her life--her mom is pregnant, and expects to go to Alabama to visit her folks, but she is really destined to go to Vermont be a stage-hand for the summer at the Village Theater Arts Festival.
Then, we see Ms. Bledel at a funeral in Greece, and she encounters her former boyfriend from Pants-1. She is shocked when she discovers that he has gotten married. Then ten minutes into the movie, we see the 4 girls meet with the pants, discussing their plans. Then they disperse -- Bledel to Greece to take art lessons, Ferrera to Vermont, Tamblyn to be a videostore clerk in New York City, and Lively to an archeological dig in Turkey. There is actually another major character in the movie, Rachel Nichols (looks just like Renee Zellweger), who provides many interesting sneers, snide remarks, and condescending expressions. In fact, Rachel Nichols provides more quirky expressions than all of the funny, quirky expression from Ferris Bueller's Day Off.
COMEDY IN ART CLASS.
Another interesting subtle point is when Ms. Bledel has her first day in the figure drawing class, and the model is a totally naked hunk. (Don't worry, parents, they don't show anything.) Bledel is nervous, talks excessively in a nervous manner, and nervously drops her pencil box. Also, she twiddles her hair nervously.
COMEDY WITH ASIAN BOYFRIEND.
Ms. Tamblyn provides a nice contrast to the other overachieving girls (actress, archeologist, artist). She is just a clerk in a video rental outlet. Her dialogue is about late fees. The film centers around her relationship with her boyfriend. In this movie, they both lose their you-know-what together. Ms. Tamblyn exclaims, "Even though I am a feminist, I still enjoy a box of chocolates." In the same scene, she asks, "Was I the first girl to say yes?" The boyfriend answers, "Of course not. I mean, of course you are!" 30 minutes into the picture is a bit of slapstick. Later on, when Ms.Tamblyn believes herself to be pregnant, she walks down the city street in a daze, and passes a pregnant woman struggling to enter her automobile, and passes a mother fighting with her screaming children (obviously, Ms.Tamblyn is thinking that she has entered Hell).
COMEDY IN THE THEATER.
Ms.Ferrera is back stage tending a curtain raising device, and it spontaneously malfunctions, and the curtain plops on top of actor Tom Wisdom. This event leads to them meeting each other.
COMEDY IN TURKEY.
More comedy comes from Turkey. Ms. Lively is at her archeological dig in Turkey. She finds a mandible (jaw bone), discolored from thousands of years of exposure to the elements. "Should have brushed more!" she exclaims.
HIGH POINT OF THIS MOVIE.
The high point of this movie is Ms.Ferrera's success in being promoted from an apprentice stage hand to giving a well-received performance as the leading lady in a Shakespeare play. While rehearsing her lines in a meadow with Tom Wisdom, Tom observes how people in the United States speak, and how Shakespeare writes: "Instead of saying, 'Enjoy the honey-heavy dew of slumber,' what we say is, 'Catch some ZZZ's.'" And during a rehearsal, Ms.Ferrera delivers her lines so elegantly that Tom Wisdom forgets his lines. Shortly thereafter, the director tells Ms.Ferrera, "Do NOT go to drama school" (referring to the fact that Ms.Ferrera is already an extraordinarily accomplished actress). In my opinion, this particular scene, where Tom Wisdom forgets his lines, is one the greatest scenes in the history of cinema.
OVERRIDING THEME OF THIS FILM.
In addition to the theme of the pants, the movie has this overriding theme--uniting, separation, then uniting again:
(1) Ms. Bledel is separated from her Greek boyfriend from Pants-1 (the boy who saved her from drowing). In Pants2, we find that he has married a woman he does not care for. But at the end of Pants-2, Bledel gets disgusted with the male model hunk, and returns to the first Greek boyfriend, since he had his marriage annuled.
(2) Ms. Lively is separated from her grandmother for 10 years, due to a complicated glitch due to a tragedy involving her mother, and intervention by her father, but in the second half of Pants2, she is reunited with her grandmother, and they become close.
(3) Tamblyn gets separated from her Asian boyfriend, because of that sort of uncomfortableness with the false-alarm pregnancy. But later, they become re-united.
(4) Ferrera is at first close to Tom Wisdom, a young British actor who stars in their play. But betrayal from another character in the movie, Rachel Nichols, leads to uncomfortable feelings. But this is reversed during the course of events.