The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants

Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants

Directed by: Ken Kwapis
Release: 2005
ASIN: B001QM7TBY
Studio: Warner Bros.
Rating: PG

Plot Summary: This movie is based on  Ann Brashares coming of age novel, The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants, which contains the story of four best friends who are apart for the first time during their sixteenth summer.  Before leaving they find a pair of jeans in a shop that mysteriously fits all four girls despite them being different heights and shapes.  They decide these are magical pants and they should each take turns wearing them on their vacations and then pass them along to the next friend along with a letter of what happens when they wear them.

Critical Evaluation

I have not read the book this film was based on but I thoroughly enjoyed watching the movie.  It’s the perfect coming of age story for teenage girls and covers many of the issues girls face whether it be problems with parents, body image, self-confidence, love and loss.  Each girl is so unique and the experiences they have are so true that it makes the watcher relate and sympathize to their situation.  Lena’s rising self-confidence and budding romance was touching to see and Bridget’s hope that finding that perfect guy and have the perfect experience means she no longer has to be sad while painful to watch at times was understandable.

My two favorite girls were Carmen and Tibby.  I loved how comfortable Carmen seemed with her body even if it did not fit in with the non-existent booty and stick straight body of her father’s soon to be wife and daughter.  She stood up for herself when others felt the need to comment about it instead of letting it tear her down.  Her pain over her father’s abandonment made me want to cry because she comes across as so strong and yet she still did have these insecurities buried inside her.

Tibby is the cynical one who seems to go through life with a pessimistic view of the world and it did bring actual tears to my eyes seeing her friendship with Bailey and the emotional turmoil that Tibby goes through after losing Bailey.

Yes, there will be detractors who say the idea of a pants fitting all four girls is ridiculous, the idea of Lena traipsing across Greece alone is mind boggling and Bailey being able to run around the way she does with a terminal illness is unrealistic.  But I felt that all worked with the magical tone of the movie that anything is possible and no matter what the friends would always be there for each other.

Genre

Coming of age story

Curriculum Ties

Coming of age/romance/friendship/Loss

Challenge Issues

N/A

Why did I include this movie?

I have always wanted to read this book and I heard the movie was actually well done.  It also seemed a good fit as it covered a lot of topics teen girls go through in their teenage years.

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