A Bow to the Queen

Friday, December 17, 2010

By: Jefferson Cruz
email: jeff.scribbles@gmail.com
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After the success of the documentaries The War Room, The American Candidate, and American High, acclaimed film-maker R.J. Cutler takes us this time to the world of the legendary and revered American Vogue editor-in-chief Anna Wintour. The September Issue centers on the production of September 2007 issue, one of the most sought after Vogues ever. It is a glimpse to the fashion kingdom: glamorous, prestigious, and cutthroat.

Cutler has managed to compress 390 hours of footage to a 90-minute film that exposes the drama behind the photo shoots, editing, proofing, and the unending love-hate relationship between Anna and the former model turned creative director, Grace Coddington. The documentary presents Anna as more complicated than her fictional equivalent, Miranda Priestley (The Devil Wears Prada based on Lauren Weisberger's experience at Vogue). It is a zoom in on how Anna stands firmly on guard of her fashion empire. Viewers would fear Anna as she sets foot on the building ordering her editors, pulling out photos, scrapping pages of the lay out, and discharging an icy atmosphere that can send models shivering in their stilettos.

Cutler did not just emphasized Anna Wintour as the editor-in-chief. He also presented Anna as a human, as a mother. In the documentary, Anna recounts about her childhood dreams, her life as just an ordinary girl, and how her father decided that she should walk down the runway to Vogue.

The September Issue is not just about producing Vogue from scratch to gloss. It is more about how powerful women, Anna Wintour and Grace Coddington, maintained Vogue as the fashion bible. At the end of the documentary, the viewers will agree without a doubt that if fashion is religion, Anna Wintour is the pope.

Published in Zee Lifestyle November 2010

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