Saturday, July 08, 2006
Friday @ 9:00 p.m. – Shopgirl. Based on a Steve Martin novella, Claire Danes is Mirabelle, who has arrived in Los Angeles from Vermont hoping to start a new life as an artist, but for the time being she spends her days working in the quiet glove department at Saks Fifth Avenue in Beverly Hills. Potential relief on the lonely hearts front finally arrives in the form of not one but two very different individuals: terminally awkward Jeremy (Jason Schwartzman), a certified loser of an amplifier salesman and budding font artist whose idea of a romantic first date is sitting outside Universal CityWalk and just staring at all the bright signs. Second, Ray Porter (SteveMartin), a wealthy logistician who shows up at Mirabelle's glove counter one day with the intention of wining and dining her in style. Despite Ray's repeated warnings that he's not looking for anything serious, Mirabelle puts considerable stock in their May-December romance even though it's only a matter of time before her heart gets broken.
Any scene with Jason is funny, he basically steals the film, but he is not the focus. Instead it's on the Martin/Danes relationship and how it seems doomed from the beginning but Mirabelle won’t give up. The acting is top notch with Martin playing a character much different than what we are accustomed too. This is another film that is really an adult film. I can't see young adults having the patience to stick through the middle portion of this film in which Danes really shines, but which is really melodramatic. There is also some narration from Martin in three parts of the film which seem unnecessary. Smart audiences don’t need it. BVD obviously had no idea what to do with this film. It got very little push and went to the art houses, despite having marketable actors in the lead roles. This film would have done well at Valley View, but it never had a chance to make it here due to BVD's distribution plan.