Mirabelle Buttersfield (Claire Danes) is a young, naive aspiring artist who works at Sak’s Fifth Avenue in Los Angeles, in the glove department. Jeremy (Jason Schwartzman) is an immature, naive slob, and worse, a horrible date. Jeremy hits on Mirabelle one night at their local laundromat. Jeremy and Mirabelle briefly see each other but she grows tired of his immaturity.
Ray Porter (Steve Martin) is a wealthy, attractive, and emotionally distant distinguished older gentleman. One day, Ray hits on Mirabelle at Sak’s. They see each other off and on, but the casual relationship is nothing but confusing for both of them.
Jeremy continually pines after Mirabelle, but after letting him know she’s seeing someone (Porter), Jeremy gets the hint and focuses on himself.
A touring musician (Mark Kozelek from Red House Painters / Sun Kil Moon) almost runs into certain disaster at his Hollywood gig, but Jeremy’s in the right place at the right time, and he quickly, thoughtfully saves the gig. The musician then invites Jeremy on the road. Jeremy learns a great deal about life from the musician, while on tour with him.
What will become of Jeremy, Mirabelle, and Ray? You’ll have to check out the movie to find out.
Based on Steve Martin’s novel, Shopgirl is an endearing film, very funny at times, and heartbreaking at others. Great music featured throughout, and a boatload of character development. Schwartzman provides comic relief at every turn, and even Martin cracks a joke here and there in his awkward way, to provide additional comic relief. But there’s a heavy cloud of melancholy that hangs over the film. Every time I see it, I find myself tearing up a little. It really hits the viewer in all the best ways. Highly recommended and absolutely underrated.