As a huge fan of the Shopaholic book series by Sophie Kinsella, I was mightily disappointed with the movie version before I even saw it. Why was it necessary to make our beloved heroine, Becky Bloomwood, an American, instead of British?
However, putting these preconceived prejudices aside, Confessions of a Shopaholic the movie (now on DVD) does a decent job of capturing Becky Bloomwood’s charm, regardless of her nationality.
Isla Fisher is the best part of the movie, portraying an impish sweetheart with major shopping issues. In this era of frugality, her shopaholism takes on deeper repercussions than were probably intended.
Becky Bloomwood cannot resist the lure of high-end fashion, glossy shopping bags, or any sort of sale. As played brilliantly by Fisher, Becky lives an increasingly stressful double life by offering advice as a fresh, new personal finance columnist, while hiding her mounting credit card debt and shoving collection notices under her bed.
In some of the funnier moments of Confessions of a Shopaholic, poor Becky is stalked by one very determined bill collector.
Hugh Dancy plays Luke Brandon, Becky’s new boss who has his own addiction problems with work. The sparks between these two are only so-so, but that’s OK because Becky’s true love is shopping. It’s more interesting to see how Becky wiggles herself out of each squirm-inducing situation.
The movie does a better job depicting the friendship between Becky and Suze (Krysten Ritter), who valiantly tries to help put an end to Becky’s addiction. John Goodman and Joan Cusack play Becky’s parents as loving, penny-pinching but well-meaning goofballs.
The laughs in the film version aren’t as frequent as the belly laughs while reading the Shopaholic books. But if you can separate the books from the movie, it’s worth watching Isla Fisher’s Becky exude her charisma while tackling Manhattan.