Confessions of a Shoppaholic is Sophie Kinsella’s cautionary tale and New York Times Bestseller that speaks to women all over the world. It is comparable to Lauren Weisberger’s The Devil Wears Prada or Helen Feilding’s Bridget Jones’s Diary. It follows Rebecca “Becky” Bloomwood’s shenanigan as she goes deeper and deeper to her addiction. What makes this a comedy as opposed to the usual road of all junkies which is tragedy, is Becky’s ability to make seamless and funny mistakes one after the other.
Unlike the Sex in the City girls who have money to burn, our dear Becky is supported only by her measly salary as a journalist. And when her credit card bill earned a Debt Collector hot on her trail, things go awry. She starts learning to lie to her well meaning boss, who is also charming and pensive. With professional trust being broken, we slowly realize the good life Becky is destroying with her shopping addiction.
Movies like these are best enjoyed with girlfriends. The kind that are true to friendship and familiarity because we all know that some part of ourselves relate to the dumb idea of buying things we think we need – and we need someone who can sympathize. We are all vulnerable to be retail clueless sometimes. Although Confession’s is a celebration of triumph over addictions, it also celebrates deep seeded morals we learn in our formation years.
The movie is riddled with sitcom-ish humour that comes across as insensitive to America’s current economic status. But hey, isn’t that what escapism is all about? It tried to bring the message across that too much retail, especially when you can’t afford it, is never prudent. It tried to charm us with numerous actors too big for their character – Isla Fisher (Becky) is adorable. It tried to make the best of post Oscar season/ pre Awards night with careless gusto to give people a break, away from depressing plot lines. It tried to be fashionable yet reminded us that we can buy education but never class. It tried to carry on its back the bestselling novel, keeping to most of what’s printed and embellishing it with a little Hollywood (setting was originally in London but was moved to New York). Confessions of a Shopaholic did try.
Flaky as it may seem, it is entertaining. It may not be the top burner, A-lister flick we are gunning for yet it is hilarious.