Starring: America Ferrera, Blake Lively, Alexis Bledel
Director: Ken Kwapis
Running Time: 119 mins
The Sisterhood Of The The Travelling Pants is an American film about four best friends who find a pair of jeans that magically fits them all perfectly. As a result, when they go their separate ways, the four agree to keep sending the jeans between them in order to keep their friendship strong.
It’s interesting to see what the generic young adult fiction movie was ten years ago. No Hunger Games or Divergent, but a story about four teenage girls’ lives and friendship. Unfortunately, as nice as the story may sound, I found it to be a fantastic bore. It takes some risks at times, and improves a little by the end, but I couldn’t escape feeling completely and utterly bored by a film that couldn’t ever grab me.
The biggest problem that I have with The Sisterhood Of The Travelling Pants is its plot. As a novel, it was apparently very successful, but I just couldn’t find any way to care about what was happening. The first issue is that we don’t get enough background on our main characters, which means it’s so much harder to be invested in them as the film goes on.
The premise of four friends being separated didn’t excite me, but what I needed to see to make that interesting was sufficient development and exposition in the opening act. Of course, too much exposition and slow pacing can always be problematic, but this film just flies straight into its story about the four being separated, and spends no more than ten minutes on establishing their bond as friends, which just wasn’t enough to fully convince me.
The rest of the movie then suffers massively because of that rushed opening act. Firstly, having four characters spread all over the world and in different situations felt completely inconsequential to me. If I had a greater sense of their bond, as exemplified through their common jeans, then I might have felt a bit more emotional connection to each character’s feelings and difficulties with whatever was going on.
Although the film does improve in its final half hour when it takes a more dramatic turn and stops being such a happy-go-lucky teenage girl movie, I was too frustrated and bored by that point given the dull, emotionless first hour and a half. Yes, there are moments of emotional power in the final act, and the risk of going to a more dramatic place deserves praise, but the impact of those moments was massively reduced for me after having sat through an hour and a half of a movie that I just couldn’t find any way to connect with.
Overall, I was extremely frustrated by this movie. It has some good points, but the way its story is laid out in such an uneven manner, following a rushed first act and then a long, drawn-out central period, makes for an incredibly dull watch, which was so hard to connect to emotionally, and that’s why I’m giving The Sisterhood Of The Travelling Pants a 4.7.