Confessions of a Shopaholic
Rated PG; Directed by P.J. Hogan; Starring Isla Fisher, Hugh Dancy, Krysten Ritter, Kristin Scott Thomas, Joan Cusack, John Goodman
There’s a certain kind of comedy that doesn’t aim high. A silly concept, possibly some decent actors, and plenty of jokes make up these comedies. On a rare occasion one of these movies may achieve something more than ending up as a future trivia question that few can answer. Confessions of a Shopaholic does not achieve more. It’s a trite film that only succeeds intermittently, and that is really only due to the charms of its star, Isla Fisher (Wedding Crashers).
The story, based on the novel by Sophie Kinsella, gives us a familiar tale of a woman living beyond her means in New York City (haven’t we seen this in Sex and the City?). In this case, Rebecca Bloomwood (Isla Fisher) is a perky, young woman who can’t pass up any “bargain” and has the credit card debt to show for it. In a silly twist of fate Rebecca ends up as the new columnist for Successful Savings magazine. Her inspired take on finances fools everyone, including her handsome boss, Luke Brandon (Hugh Dancy).
The story is fluff, the heroine is a ditz, and it’s hard to care about her financial follies. Still, Isla Fisher is fun to watch, prancing around in her quite ugly “fashionable” clothes. There are some laughs that make the movie tolerable. A good cast also helps. John Lithgow, Wendie Malick, Joan Cusack, John Goodman, Julie Hagerty, and Kristin Scott Thomas all have fun with their small roles. Krysten Ritter, as Rebecca’s roommate, also stands out. Too bad the material doesn’t match the talent of the cast.
Comedies come and go. Confessions of a Shopaholic is not a film that will stick in the mind. We won’t be remembering it for years; it’s only passable. Hopefully, charming Isla Fisher will get better material in her next movie.