Yes, gals, that's Anna Wintour's signature smirk on my tele.
Have you seen the 2008 documentary The September Issue? If you have ever read Vogue, or secretly wanted to be Miranda Priestly in The Devil Wears Prada, or coveted a Chanel suit, you MUST watch this film.
As you may or may not know, the September issue of Vogue magazine is purchased by 10% of American women. It is generally weighed in pounds as opposed to being enumerated in pages. It forecasts future trends and tells us what to wear and what to hide in the back of the closet for another season.
The documentary follows the steely Editor in Chief of American Vogue, Anna Wintour (the woman that The Devil Wears Prada was not so loosely based upon) as she makes decisions both brash and calculated about the September issue of the publication.
While her reputation as a cold-hearted snake (yes, I quoted Paula Abdul, I am a child of the 80s) proceeds her, the film does reveal the slightest glimmer of her soul, as she sits with her daughter in their Long Island estate.
As she jets from New York to Paris, giant black sunglasses most always mounted on her thin noise and venti sugar-free something or other in-hand, she allows us to look into her world but not into her process. Her decisions to keep or delete a page or a photo from the issue at times befuddle and even enrage her colleagues.
Perhaps the most poignant narrative in the film is that of Grace Coddington, fiery red-head, former model, and long-time Creative Director at the magazine. Both from the U.K., and both commencing their tenure at American Vogue the same year, their stories follow a parallel trajectory, but each woman reacts to their success in such dramatically different ways. One scene shows Grace and Anna, former roommates, elbow to knobby elbow together in an elevator, scarcely a word uttered between them. While Grace brings patissêries to her Parisian photo shoot for the staff and models (who knew, they do eat?), Anna keeps physical and emotional boundaries between her staffers distinct.
Whether the only designer names you can afford are on special at Target or you have a closet full of Balenciaga gowns, the documentary will take you on a fun trip around the halls of Vogue and to the streets of Paris and Rome. Ultimately, the care with which the designs are selected and the models are photographed remind us that clothes are the only art which can reshape our exterior, the only art that we can experiment with on a daily basis. So, watch The September Issue, I guarantee that you'll want to play dress-up afterward....
48 minutes ago