Critics are saying that the new movie Sex and the City 2 may have jumped the shark, if not with it's plot, then with its endless commercial tie-ins, gratuitous product placement and the amount of sheer hype tied to the show. HBO started promoting products related to the movie months before its release, including a four-pack of thong underwear, T-shirts, cocktail glasses and even a "Carrie" necklace. As the movie's opening date drew closer, retailers started hawking look-alike fashions, facial creams and Sex and the City bra styles. Even die-hard fans cringed a little at the commercially-orchestrated "Girls' Night Out" premiere parties. A New-Jersey-based skin care company, Repechage, offers a helpful guide explaining which of their products would be favored by each of the movie's four female stars, and HBO's "Shop Now" link to Sex and the City merchandise on its Web page leads visitors to page after page of movie-related merchandise, including "Sex and the City" foldable after-party ballet shoes, mugs, mousepads, charm necklaces, leopard print scarves, martini shakers, champagne flutes, cosmetic cases, and on and on. "Sex and the City 2" raises the question: at what point does the appeal of a creative theatrical work buckle under the sheer weight of its associated over-commercialization? We may have an answer ... one analysis of box-office statistics shows SATC-2 earned less on its opening weekend than the first sequel did, and that theater-goers are liking it less.
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