Based on Steve Martin's best-selling novella,
and starring Golden Globe® winner Claire Danes (Best Actress
in a TV Series, "My So-Called Life," 1994), Golden
Globe nominee Steve Martin (Best Actor in a Motion Picture
-- Comedy/Musical, "Father of the Bride, Part II,"
1995), and Jason Schwartzman ("Bewitched"), "Shopgirl"
is a disarmingly funny love story.
brilliantly played by Danes, is an aspiring artist working
behind the glove counter at a Beverly Hills department store
when she meets two very different men - Jeremy (Schwartzman),
a socially inept guy who doesn't seem to be going anywhere,
and Ray (Martin) a wealthy entrepreneur who has the world
at his feet. Filled with the mixed signals and missteps of
a modern romance, "Shopgirl" is a fresh and witty,
warm, and funny romantic comedy you can't help but fall in
When we say Steve Martin, you think of Father of
the Bride (1991), you think of Bowfinger (1999), you think
of Cheaper by the Dozen (2003). When you see Steve Martin,
you think of laughing at his slapstick antics. The last thing
you’d expect the comedian to do is to write a serious
novel about a salesgirl and her search for true love, and
have a movie studio adapt it into a film directed by Thailand-born
Anand Tucker, whose last work was Hilary and Jackie in 1998.
on Martin’s novel and with a screenplay written by him,
the ever-luminous Claire Danees plays Mirabelle, the titular
“shopgirl” who sells gloves and accessories in
a high-end department store. Like any other disillusioned
urbanite, she is an aspiring artist who wishes to break out
of her mundane routine job. Two men then appear in her life:
a rich divorcee and a struggling musician, whom she gets involved
with and eventually has to make a choice which one will give
her true happiness.
the story plot, the movie sounds like a million other typical
romantic comedies you have seen before. There also seems to
be an ending so predictable, you think you can be a Hollywood
scriptwriter and earn big bucks like them. But this little
piece of gem gave us a surprise, because it turned out to
be a really odd piece of cinematic gem.
are no fluffy notions about love throughout this 104-minute
movie. What we get instead is a strange brooding story that
dwells on melancholy and sadness – very untypical of
Steve Martin. The love triangle between Mirabelle and the
two men seems to be shrouded in constant bittersweet-ness,
loss and loneliness. It sure isn’t your usual candy-coated
Hollywood romance story. The quirkiness of the movie is another
thing you’d notice after the movie ends. While some
may find the movie bland, other may rejoice at the true reflection
of love in today’s fast-moving world. What makes true
love? What makes happiness? The world-weary will be pondering
about that after the credits roll.
the eccentric Jason Schwartzman (Bewitched, The Darjeeling
Limited) play the struggling artist also earns the movie some
points. Watching his awkwardly running out of the room to
get a condom before attempting to make love to Mirabelle is,
well, memorably unusual. Meanwhile, Martin plays the wealthy
divorcee who has a hand in charming Mirabelle. As to what
the true intention of the 62-year-old actor-writer is to produce
this movie, we’ll leave the interpretation to you.
This Code 3 DVD contains no extra features.
There is nothing to complain about for the disc’s visual
transfer, and is available in its original Dolby Digital 5.1
DVD RATING :
by John Li