Shopgirl - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Shopgirl Reviews

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Super Reviewer
April 25, 2012
This movie is small, quiet and very honest. It was kind of interesting the way, even though the film is called Shopgirl, Mirabelle is pretty much the least interesting character in the film. Ray is probably the most interesting, while Jeremy is an insufferable caricature of a twenty-something screw-up. This movie reminded me a lot of Closer, in that it had little in the way of forward-momentum story-wise. The core of this film was in the way its characters interacted and shaped each other. It bothered me a little bit that all it took to turn Jeremy from a self-absorbed, awkward twerp to a real human being was a little while on tour and listening to an audiobook about relationships. It seemed like something of a cop-out; there's really no social Band-Aid solution for social ineptitude. If there were, I'd be going around fixing people left and right. One of the only other things I didn't like was the voice-over narration; I would have much rather made up my own mind about the proceedings, as opposed to being told what to think about it by Ray (of all people). Ray isn't the bad guy here, any more than Jeremy is the good guy, and I think to paint them as such really sells this complex little movie short. In fact, I think the biggest pleasure I got from this movie is figuring the characters out. I could tell when Ray was talking to his therapist that he and Mirabelle were going to get hurt, if only because that's what happens when people want different things from their relationship and don't know about that conflict. This was an endlessly interesting movie, real and sweet and not so much funny as droll. I love puzzle films.
Super Reviewer
January 17, 2008
A rare case where I have actually upgraded this a star from my original rating.
I don't think I fully appreciated this movie until I rewatched it. I think originally I expected a chick flick, which it's not, as it is packaged in that way. This is much better than a chick flick!
Claire Danes is fantastic as Mirabelle. I could really relate to her slightly awkward character. The depression angle was really well played. Originally I hated Jeremy as he's a bit yuck and stingy with money - no ones idea of a leading guy in a romance, but I found I warmed to him on a second viewing - well, compared to Steve Martin's Ray, who is not age appropriate and psychologically unwell himself, in a different way to Mirabelle. Just a really well played and quite sweet little movie.
Super Reviewer
½ March 26, 2011
I've said it before - I like stories about relationships, and this suits the bill. In it, Claire, Ray and Jeremy all learn quite a bit about love.
Super Reviewer
½ October 25, 2010
A somewhat muddled story that seemed like it was trying too hard, or maybe that it couldn't decide exactly what it wanted to be when it grew up. If you like the people in it, you'll like the film, probably. I did, hence an extra half star. :)
Super Reviewer
December 9, 2008
One of Steve Martin's best screenwriting turns, based on his novella. Absolutely loved it, like all Steve's work.
Super Reviewer
½ April 22, 2010
This is how romantic dramedys should be: smart, perceptive, charming, and full of life, quirkiness, and a touch of artsy-ness. I really liked the writing and direction, but the performances are what really had me. Film producers and studio heads need to take note- romance movies don't need to be mindless, dull predictability fests starring Matthew McConaughey. I was also quite pleased with some of the arstdy lighting and camera work. It added to the film instead of being a flashy spectacle. This is because the film actually had substance, and thus earned the right to throw in a little flash. Although there was a tough of darkness to Martin's character that makes me look at him in a new light now, I thought he gave an outstanding performance, as did Danes who was brilliant, and Schwartzman-who I can say (for better or worse) that I can really identify with in a few ways. I highly recommend this one.
Super Reviewer
July 21, 2009
Claire Danes, Steve Martin, Jason Schwartzman

DIRECTED BY: Anand Tucker

Mirabelle is a "plain Jane" overseeing the rarely frequented glove counter at Saks Fifth Avenue in Beverly Hills. An artist struggling to keep up with even the minimum payment on her credit card and student loans, she keeps to herself until a rich, handsome fifty something named Ray Porter sweeps her off her feet. Simultaneously, Mirabelle is being pursued by Jeremy, a basic bachelor who's not quite as cultured and successful as Ray. When fate steps in, the outcome may not always be a storybook ending, because in the was life.

I get the story and all that, but I can't help to feel how incredibly awkward and cringe creepy it was to see Steve Martin and Claire Danes together in this film. That being said, I did enjoy the film and get the much deeper note this movie has that some just don't seem to be getting. With Mirabelle suffering from depression to Ray wanting love and a family but not letting himself have it or be happy. Always keeping people at an arms length. Sad story really with a good ending I think. It was a good watch and I eventually did stop cringing.. :)
Super Reviewer
½ January 13, 2010
Having never read any of Steve Martin's writing, I'm not quite sure WHAT I expected? I guess the best way to describe it is simply as "more"?

The movie was enjoyable.
Very nicely shot, with some truly beautiful visuals.
A solid cast, nicely acted.
Some clever / interesting dialog, but not overdone.

But for some reason I just felt that ultimately, the story itself was not very original or interesting.
Super Reviewer
January 8, 2010
I was bored to tears by Shopgirl. It seems to be stuck in a void between a serious drama like Two Lovers and the surreal trappings of a Wes Anderson movie, but it lacks the appealing qualities of either of those examples.

The story just seemed arbitrary and it didn't flow well. The actors were unimpressive and had no on-screen chemistry, and each and every scene just fell flat when it reached for any kind of emotion. I never got much of an idea of what the movie was ABOUT. Even a formulaic romantic comedy would have been better than this.
Super Reviewer
June 15, 2009
It was cute enough, it was kinda slow at times. And the weirdo/random narration/slowing down of the film was strange and I feel like it disrupted the flow of the movie. It seems that they used the same music over and over. I was just glad that I didn't have to watch an actual sex scene between Steve Martin and Claire Danes.
Super Reviewer
½ November 28, 2008
"Relationships don't always fit like a glove."

Mirabelle Buttersfield (Claire Danes) is an aspiring artist in her mid-twenties who, after graduating from college, moved to Los Angeles, where she works at the glove counter of an upscale department store. Mirabelle's job is simple and not demanding, but it doesn't pay especially well, and she finds herself struggling to get out from under a growing mountain of debt from student loans and credit cards. One night, while doing her laundry, Mirabelle meets Jeremy (Jason Schwartzman), a scruffy but likable would-be musician who makes ends meet selling guitar amps. While Jeremy is obviously infatuated with Mirabelle, she isn't sure how she feels about him, especially after she meets Ray Porter (Steve Martin), a man in his fifties whom she meets at the store. Ray is independently wealthy, intelligent, and charming, and after asking her out on a date he sweeps her off her feet. However, while Mirabelle quickly falls for Ray and he's generous to a fault with her, he refuses to commit exclusively to her and suggests they should both see other people, a prospect that no longer holds much appeal for her.

This is a pretty good movie. It may be deemed unpalatable to see Steve Martin slobbering all over Claire Danes, but their relationship is presented in a realistic manner and in fact poses less of a problem than that between Danes and Jason Schwartzman. That coupling is unlikely at best, as the latter's character is uncultured to the point of mild retardation. As for the story itself, Shopgirl is diverting enough, and with an affecting underbelly of sadness, heightened by diversions such as Danes's battle against depression and the miserable tone of her parental home. For me however, it fails to answer the basic question asked by Danes towards the beginning of the movie as she is approached romantically by millionaire Martin - " why me?". Well indeed. In real life perhaps, but here the lead character appears as a gloomy semi-starved fashion tragedy, in a job that screams 'going nowhere'. The role is perfectly played, but contains little to entice jet-set love interest. The fate of the movie is, alas, unlikely to give a happy ending. This is far too pretentious for the brainless rom-com crowd and not quite profound enough for the indie set. For those who do discover it will be a nice if unmemorable surprise.
Super Reviewer
½ October 23, 2007
Jason Schwartzman's character was great. Otherwise it was just a movie about an old rich guy using a young girl and regretting it.
Super Reviewer
December 14, 2007
I really thought Mirabelle was going to commit suicide at the end. If I was a depressive and some old flame told me he HAD loved me all along, I would think, to hell with it. I have everything now. Time to go. It had to end romantically. Ugh.
Super Reviewer
½ April 16, 2007
The most misunderstood and underrated romantic dram-edy ever made. One of Steve Martin's best performances.
Super Reviewer
½ October 17, 2006
So wonderfully done.
Super Reviewer
June 30, 2006
This is, potentially-speaking, the kind of Steve Martin project I would automatically love. But I'm past the potential; I've actually witnessed this fairly flat and totally lacking in energy project. Right up front, flixster buddies, I simply cannot seem to get behind Claire Danes. I am rarely an inarticulate review chimer-inner, but I simply and most sincerely have not word-one of explanation for my . . . lack of enthusiasm for Danes. Just seeing her in this movie knocks off two stars, gut-reaction-wise, minimum. Serously, Danes seems a very likeable personality in real life, really, and she's an attractive woman, physically speaking. That's so not enough for this movie. And Schwartzman? Geez . . . I'd knock off two more stars, but I can't do that to good old Steve. Please find it in your collective flixster `ohana hearts to forgive me if you can. If you cannot forgive me, my sincere apologies. I live, what I might have come to characterize quite recently, in my growing age, a very, um, bittersweet life, on flixster and off. I can handle the criticism, but please be kind : )
Super Reviewer
May 26, 2006
well, what can i say: This movie is absolutelya only chicks film, women will loved it.
its is full of love, tears, its sweet and very very pink.
Although the acting jobs were very good, Avery diferent acting job from Steve Martin of what we usually watch of him and Claire Danes is also very good.
Super Reviewer
½ June 15, 2007
Martin starred, wrote, and produced, yet this lacked the fun of most of his more silly comedies. Claire Danes surely has "It," that something that draws men, young and old, to her. The triangle is somewhat similar to Clara Bow's movie It. There is a crude scene with Schwartzman suggesting a Ziploc back for contraception that made me laugh. Otherwise, Danes' character's depression affects the whole mood.
Super Reviewer
½ February 23, 2007
[font=Century Gothic]In "Shopgirl", Mirabelle(Claire Danes) is an aspiring artist who works at the gloves counter at Saks Fifth Avenue. One night at the laundromat, she meets Jeremy(Jason Schwartzman). They date. They have sex.[/font]
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[font=Century Gothic]At work one day, she helps Ray Porter(Steve Martin), an older gentleman, buy a pair of gloves. Later, she is sent the gloves from Ray and a note, asking her if she would like to have dinner with him.[/font]
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[font=Century Gothic][/font]
[font=Century Gothic]"Shopgirl" is an overlong movie(Steve Martin adapts his own novella) about potential that strives to be romantic, but instead comes off as cynically sleazy. There are some cinematic pretensions but otherwise the story is mechanically told. Even an actress as capable as Claire Danes can only do so much with material as thin as this.[/font]
Super Reviewer
March 19, 2013
Not bad. Not great mind you. The performances of Danes and Martin unfortunately can't save a lukewarm screenplay put together by Martin himself. Something about the relationships doesn't quite work either.
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