Director: P.J. Hogan
Cast: Isla Fisher, Hugh Dancy, Joan Cusack,
John Goodman, John Lithgow, Kristin Scott Thomas, Leslie Bibb,
Fred Armisen, Julie Hagerty, Krysten Ritter, Robert Stanton,
Christine Ebersole, Clea Lewis, Wendie Malick, Stephanie March
RunTime: 1 hr 44 mins
Released By: BVI
Official Website: http://www.shopaholicmovie.com/
Opening Day: 26 March 2009
In the glamorous world of New York City, Rebecca Bloomwood
(Isla Fisher) is a fun-loving girl who is really good at shopping—a
little too good, perhaps. She dreams of working for her favorite
fashion magazine, but can't quite get her foot in the door—until
ironically, she snags a job as an advice columnist for a financial
magazine published by the same company. As her dreams are
finally coming true, she goes to ever more hilarious and extreme
efforts to keep her past from ruining her future. Based on
the novel by Sophia Kinsella.
There is something this reviewer must confess – shopaholics are continuing their act of blindly buying everything in their line of sight because of people like him. “Consumerism rules” would be his advice whenever a shopahlic asks him whether she (this may sound sexist, but we all know that the female species is often guiltier when it comes to mindless shopping) should purchase the item she is holding oh so tightly in her hands.
And after watching this P. J. Hogan (My Best Friend’s Wedding, Peter Pan) directed movie based on the books "Confessions of a Shopaholic" and "Shopaholic Takes Manhattan" by Sophie Kinsella, this reviewer has got a new piece of advice to dish whenever a shopaholic asks for his opinion: “What are credit cards for?”
The shopaholic in qurstion is Rebecca Bloomwood, who unintentionally gets herself a job as a journalist in a financial magazine after a coincidental mix up. This patient in question is obsessed with shopping and no thanks to her decreasing income source, she has no choice to take up the job. She goes on to innovatively use unconventional metaphors to pen her first article, putting her in public limelight. Admiration isn’t the only thing she’ll get, because there is also a charming boss and a renowned fashion magazine journalist job in waiting. Will the shopaholic in her become a better person, and eventually find happiness?
Walk into the cinema expecting a feel good, enjoyable and funny romantic comedy, and you’d be getting a feel good, enjoyable and funny romantic comedy. Walk into the cinema expecting an intelligent satire on consumerism and consumption, and you’d still be getting a feel good, enjoyable and funny romantic comedy.
This is no high brow English comedy which requires you to put on your thinking cap, definitely.
The delightful casting is the first thing that strikes you about the movie. In the leading role we have Isla Fisher (Horton Hears a Who!, Definitely, Maybe), who channels a familiar ditzy persona to Rebecca Bloomwood’s character. Althought the role is an almost stereotypical one, Fisher channels pleasant and likeable energy into it, and audiences will be left smiling, and in some occasions, chuckling. What we don’t get is how the Australia raised actress and Sacha Baron “Borat” Cohen are engaged. But we digress. Other effective casting choices include Hugh Dancy (Evening, Savage Grace) as the charming boss, John Goodman (Speed Racer) and Joan Cusack (Martian Child) as the caring parents, and very interestingly, Kristen Scott Thomas (The Other Boleyn Girl) as a diva fashion magazine boss.
The movie may break new ground in the romantic comedy arena (hands up, those who did not expect a happy ending coming), but it’s as agreeable as it can get. Complete with pop friendly tunes like Jordyn Taylor’s aptly titled “Accessory” and Lady Gaga’s suitably named “Fashion” ringing in your ears after the movie’s 104 minute runtime, the fluffy movie may even inspire you to go shopping – straight after you step out of the cinema. And this reviewer would advocate this move. After all, consumerism rules, and more importantly, what are credit cards for?
Review by John Li
(A straightforward and enjoyable romantic comedy that banks on the cast’s enjoyable performances)