Magazine June 21, 2010, Issue

The Culture Monster

(Dreamworks)

The franchise is on its last legs. Once a transgressive cultural phenomenon, it’s aged ungracefully into a cash cow that a greedy studio just won’t let die. The one-liners are stale, the supporting characters are going through the motions, and the protagonists are showing their age. They used to be chasing romance and adventure; now they’re facing down mid-life crises. The thrill vanished years ago, and all that’s left is coarseness, camp, and occasional bursts of sloppy sentimentality.

No, I’m not talking about Sex and the City 2. (What — you expected me to sit through that two-and-a-half-hour turkey?) I’m talking

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