The devil is plastic in Shopaholic | Film Review | Indy Week
Pin It

The devil is plastic in Shopaholic 

click to enlarge Isla Fisher (Wedding Crashers) stars in Confessions of a Shopaholic. - PHOTO BY ROBERT ZUCKERMAN/ TOUCHSTONE

Confessions of a Shopaholic opens Friday throughout the Triangle

Confessions of a Shopaholic opens itself to obvious accusations that it is merely a cheap knockoff of such haute couture homages as The Devil Wears Prada and Sex and the City. Here, Manhattan-based protagonist Rebecca Bloomwood (Isla Fisher, Wedding Crashers) intones Carrie Bradshaw-esque monologues about fashion; her roommate, Suze (Krysten Ritter), physically resembles a cross between Devil costars Anne Hathaway and Emily Blunt; Kristin Scott Thomas plays a frosty, French-y magazine editor, following in the Prada-clad stride of Meryl Streep.

Indeed, a disconnect seemingly runs throughout this adaptation of the first two books in British writer Sophie Kinsella's popular series. Fashionistas will ogle the endless array of Gucci, Burberry and Yves Saint Laurent literally bursting out of Rebecca's closet (the film's costume designer is Patricia Field, who did similar work for Devil ... and Sex ...). Meanwhile, other viewers will choose to focus on the revolving credit lines and compounding interest endemic to Rebecca's corrosive consumerism. Her predilection for $200 underwear and $78 jars of honey soon adds up to $16,000 of debt accrued on 12 maxed-out credit cards.

Foiled in her attempt to land her dream job with a trendy fashion journal, Rebecca settles for work at a struggling money magazine, where she parlays her angst into a column on financially prudent shopping. The column becomes an overnight sensation, catapulting Rebecca and her dreamy Brit boss (Hugh Dancy) into celebrity. All the while, Rebecca does her best to conceal her personal financial woes and dodge a persistent collections agent (Robert Stanton).

Aussie director P.J. Hogan (Muriel's Wedding and My Best Friend's Wedding) keeps the message buoyant and mostly on point. Indeed, the film flies when Hogan accentuates the sly and surreal. During an elevator ride following a relapse of Rebecca's shopping binges, a muzak version of Amy Winehouse's "Rehab" plays in the background. And, a veritable chorus of animated mannequins appears throughout the film to woo Rebecca with its siren song of consumption.

Hogan's keen direction complements sturdy supporting turns from Thomas, John Lithgow, Joan Cusack, John Goodman and even Julie Hagerty. But, Fisher's razor-sharp comic timing is the true star, single-handedly generating an effervescent, whip-smart spunk that carries the film through several dull spots. Thematically speaking, Confessions of a Shopaholic tries to have its cake and eat it too, but Fisher turns out to be the icing that hides any imperfections.

Comments

Showing 1-1 of 1

Add a comment

 
Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-1 of 1

Add a comment

INDY Week publishes all kinds of comments, but we don't publish everything.

  • Comments that are not contributing to the conversation will be removed.
  • Comments that include ad hominem attacks will also be removed.
  • Please do not copy and paste the full text of a press release.

Permitted HTML:
  • To create paragraphs in your comment, type <p> at the start of a paragraph and </p> at the end of each paragraph.
  • To create bold text, type <b>bolded text</b> (please note the closing tag, </b>).
  • To create italicized text, type <i>italicized text</i> (please note the closing tag, </i>).
  • Proper web addresses will automatically become links.

Latest in Film Review



Twitter Activity

Comments

Just saw Pitch Perfect 3 trailer. Looks like its going to be another year of fun ride. Incredibly excited to …

by Andrew190 on Dueling college a cappella groups in Pitch Perfect (Film Review)

We'd be hard pressed to find a free local weekly with film reviews this poetic. Your writers translate complex ideas …

by Aims Arches on Isabelle Huppert Unforgettably Avenges Herself in Elle (Film Review)

Most Read

No recently-read stories.

Visit the archives…

Most Recent Comments

Just saw Pitch Perfect 3 trailer. Looks like its going to be another year of fun ride. Incredibly excited to …

by Andrew190 on Dueling college a cappella groups in Pitch Perfect (Film Review)

We'd be hard pressed to find a free local weekly with film reviews this poetic. Your writers translate complex ideas …

by Aims Arches on Isabelle Huppert Unforgettably Avenges Herself in Elle (Film Review)

Ever since the surprise success of the Fox TV show Glee audiences have been exposed to the world of choirs, …

by philip190 on Dueling college a cappella groups in Pitch Perfect (Film Review)

robertm748: You mean without warning, apart from the very first paragraph of his review???

by Neil Morris on Amy Adams’s Authenticity Elevates Tom Ford’s Glam Pulp Fiction in Nocturnal Animals (Film Review)

Nathan Gelgud is unsure whether the disenfranchised classes in England are whiter than in the US? Really?

Well, …

by Eileen Smyth on Aliens land in an English slum in Attack the Block (Film Review)

© 2017 Indy Week • 201 W. Main St., Suite 101, Durham, NC 27701 • phone 919-286-1972 • fax 919-286-4274
RSS Feeds | Powered by Foundation