Saturday, 26 September 2020
Confessions of a Shopaholic
Written by Sandra Fitzpatrick   
Thursday, 19 February 2009 00:00

ThumbnailBased on the best-selling novels by Sophie Kinsella Confessions of a Shopaholic has been much anticipated by hoards of Choo worshipping women (Jimmy Choo that is). I don’t know about the books but the film adaptation is a lot like shopping at a clearance sale – you might get that one fabulous item, but it requires some digging to find amidst the clutter of leftover junk. In the case of this movie Isla Fisher is the fabulous find and the junk is pretty much everything else.

Ever since she was a little girl Rebecca Bloomwood (Fisher) has been obsessed with shopping. Buying new things makes her feel beautiful and at peace with the world – even if that feeling is just temporary and she has to come home to a stack of credit card bills. The fact of the matter is that she is addicted, and easily seduced by window displays. In several scenes she imagines the willowy window mannequins actually beckoning or speaking to her, coercing her to come in and spend. I thought these scenes were pretty darn creepy and would certainly do nothing to get me into the store. I’d probably run screaming to the nearest psychiatrist’s office… but I am not Rebecca Bloomwood.

Her dream is to work as a journalist for the biggest fashion magazine in New York but to do that she has to start from the bottom. In this case the bottom is an intellectual finance-magazine completely beyond the scope of someone who would thinks “saving money” means buying a Marc Jacobs dress just because it has a sale tag.

Through a series of flukes she winds up with the job, and the super-cute Brit boss (Hugh Dancy) who sees potential that even she is oblivious to. Her first column is a smash and she becomes a household name as “The Girl in the Green Scarf”, writing articles that put money-matters into terms the average consumer can relate to. You can pretty much guess what happens next. Gal gets famous, gal gets new clothes, gal gets bills, gal gets caught, gal learns lesson, and gal’s dreams come true.

ThumbnailIf only life could follow such a nice path of fantasy! Of course along the way there is a fair share of silly moments, crazy fashions, and highly annoying supporting characters. John Goodman and Joan Cusack are embarrassingly underused as Rebecca’s thrifty parents. Overused is Krysten Ritter who plays best-friend “Suze”. You might recognize her from recent Gilmore Girls episodes and she is exactly the same character here. She annoys me because she basically “play-acts” all of her scenes with over-the-top expressions and mugging for the camera.

Confessions of a Shopaholic wishes it had the cleverness of Sex and the City but journalism aside Rebecca Bloomwood is no Carrie Bradshaw. Despite the obvious charms and talents of Isla Fisher, this movie is the intellectual equivalent of a Fluffer-Nutter Sandwich.