Released just in time for the global financial meltdown, this hymn to designer products features Isla Fisher, who demonstrated her comedic talent by stealing Wedding Crashers from both Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson – no small achievement. Here she plays Rebecca Bloomwood, a compulsive shopper who, while hoping to land a job working at a fashion magazine, accidentally finds herself hired on a columnist at the sister publication, a rather less glamorous financial mag. Her columns, couching financial advice in shopping metaphors, become a surprising hit, and sparks begin to fly with her editor (Hugh Dancy). Meanwhile, a relentless debt collector is dogging her heels.
Combining Sex and the City voice-overs and clothes with Bridget Jones insecurities, the film sets out to be, I suppose, some sort of female fantasy. And sure, just as we are expected to buy Seth Rogen as a babe magnet in the male POV rom-coms, one can be fairly asked to do some heavy suspension of disbelief exercises when it comes to the match here, too. But why, as seems to be so often the case, are the female characters presented as ADD idiots? It becomes very hard to like Rebecca when, with her career (and quite possibly that of the man who is giving her a shot at the journalistic brass ring) hanging in the balance, she would rather rampage at a sample sale then do her work. Fisher throws herself into the part with enormous energy, but she is working with empty, predictable, numbing material.
It’s Blu-Ray, so it better bloody well look nice, and so it does, but depending on your screen, you might not detect much more than a nuance of improvement over a standard DVD. The colours are warm, though the flesh tones seem a bit too pale – is Fisher really that ghostly? Grain is non-existent, of course. Generally speaking, it’s a perfectly lovely transfer, but not mind-blowing.
The sound is good, though again, not exceptional. Certainly, soundtrack’s releasing company should be pleased, as the background music surges forth, commanding consumer attention from all sides. The surround effects, however, are rather lackluster. The stampede at the sample sale, for instance, would have benefited from an immersive crowd effect, but there is none. Essentially, we have crystalline dialogue with a surround music track.
Behind the Fashion: This is a collection of tiny featurettes (“Wardrobe by Patricia Field,” “Temple of Shopping,” “The Green Scarf,” “New York: Fashion Central,” “Sample Sale Madness” and “Window Shopping”), ranging from 90 seconds to three minutes in length. They’re fairly standard behind-the-scenes stuff.
Deleted Scenes: (6:19) Four of them.
Music Videos: Three of them: “Stuck with Each Other” by Shontelle, “Accessory” by Jordyn Taylor, and “Takes Time to Love” by Trey Songz.
Disc 2: Digital Copy.
It’s a Jerry Bruckheimer production, so it is slick, professional, and not boring. But it does seem to feel a certain contempt for both characters and audience.