The September Issue, the much buzzed-about film documenting the making of Vogue's legendary September 2007 issue, opened Friday and after seeing it, we've got to say, the atmosphere portrayed borders on terrifying and devoid of soul, but it's not Anna Wintour's fault.
With Raisinets in hand, we joined the legions of curious, fashion-obsessed women and gay men for opening night, and came away with mixed feelings. By now, most of us have inhaled at least some of the hype surrounding the doc and therefore perhaps absorbed the primary message point: Anna Wintour is the Devil in Prada. However, we'd beg to differ and call her something closer to a teeny-tiny, perhaps a bit carbohydrate-deprived tough-as-nails business woman who doesn't give a what what people think, and actually thinks it's kind of funny she has this repuation, and is going to milk it for all it's money-making power. There was something kind of sad about Anna's daily routine, and in interviews, she was pretty candid about everything besides her reputation - her father's Victorian upbringing and her successful siblings' mockery of her business. On the other hand, she has proven to be a raconteur for the Vogue brand and her skills showed during various scenes with advertisers and biz-side people. When it comes to the artistic side, it's her job to cut and criticize because she has no illusions about what sells. Although, an oblivious ability to cut through someone's confidence seems to have been something her daughter, Bee Schaffer inherited. In a quickly brilliant turn, Bee flippantly dismissed the fashion industry and declared her preference to go to law school. Well then!
Naturally, there's Grace Coddington on the polar opposite side, yet closest to Anna, who emerged as the breakout favorite. Coddington singlehandedly seemed to keep the artistic vision and superior ingenuity of a venerable fashion magazine alive. While we sympathized with the furor over spectacular shots getting tossed to the side, and realize her mighty fight against such moves is essential to the team dynamic, there are two sides to every story. We, too, loved Grace for her candor and charm- she probably gave PR an absolute heart attack, and her confessionals alone are worth seeing for both inspiration and scandal. The rest of the staff lived up to previous expectations and added to Anna's rigidity by waffling on just about everything in her presence. Only Grace never did, and received the admiration of the so-called ice queen as a result.
Go see it, you won't be bored.