Um. Let’s put in “alcoholism” for “shopaholism” in this movie, and suddenly, it’s no longer funny. And really, the symptoms are the same. “The world gets better, for a little while,” says Isla Fisher, “And then I have to do it again, and again, and again.” So she remains in denial about her addiction, refusing to see the destruction it wreaks on her life. If it was vodka instead of Prada, this would be a tragedy. But because it’s clothes, it’s a comedy!
I actually had to explain to Ben that this was a twisted representation of 2007. “You see, monkey,” I said, “before you were born, there was NOT a credit crunch in effect. Everyone could get all the credit they wanted, and they were encouraged to buy as much as possible. In fact, the general cultural sentiment seemed to be that people deserved all these nice things. It just seemed to be implicit, that people should trade their money for happiness, and that these items would bring them joy. And in order to buy things, they were offered all sorts of credit – credit cards, store cards, home refinancing, bank overdrafts, etc. The credit issuers made money on the exorbitant interest, and kept telling consumers that it was normal to have thousand of dollars of debt. And the fact that this all-too-common problem, the need to develop an addiction to commercial shopping habits to counter a lack of joy in everyday life, was made into a COMEDY, says that we are not looking deeply enough at the REASONS that people turn to shopping. Maybe we need more joy that doesn’t come from addictive substances like shopping, or drinking.”
Ben gave me a quizzical look, and stuck his tongue out. I took that to mean that he agreed – this movie was one of the worst I’ve ever seen, on MANY levels. Badly written, bad subject, badly handled, and poorly timed release. Good physical comedy on the part of the actors; bad scriptwriting. This was the biggest pile of crap I’ve seen in a while – and I include National Treasure 2 and Ben’s diaper this morning in that category.