The September Issue

"Excellent"

The September Issue Review


Both a documentary about the production of an issue of Vogue magazine and a profile of its editor Anna Wintour, this film struggles a bit to find some focus. But the people around Wintour are so colourful that we never want it to end.

The September 2007 issue of Vogue was the magazine's biggest issue ever, and the filmmakers follow the incredibly hands-on Wintour through the process, from brainstorming the concepts to deciding which clothes to feature, planning photo shoots and ultimately choosing what images will make it in. Known as a demanding tyrant (one editor calls her "the pope of fashion"), Wintour also gives us a glimpse of her childhood in London and the family pressures that fuel her perfectionism.

If the film was only about this icy woman, it would be a rather clinical experience. And this is the fun side of putting a magazine together; there isn't a single mention about story planning, writing, subbing or proofreading.

She may reveal some of her inner insecurities, but Wintour isn't hugely likeable (although her black sense of humour is hilarious). Instead, the heart of the film is her creative director, the ex-model Grace Coddington, who happens to be an artistic genius. She also wears her feelings on her sleeve and speaks openly, with sardonic humour, about her ongoing clashes with Wintour.

This tension between these powerful, brilliant women makes the film grippingly entertaining. We follow them to Paris, London and Rome (for a riotous cover shoot with Testino and Miller), and through the intricacies of photo spreads and editorial decision-making. Their stubbornness is wonderful to watch, and is balanced by the colourful people around them, most notably the drama queen Tally and a series of designers both young (Thakoon) and well-established (Gaultier).

The cameras follow both Wintour and Coddington so closely that we really get a sense of their personal feelings, their private lives and their daily interaction, which is a fascinating combination of admiration and stubborn will. Filmmaker Cutler captures this with superbly elegant photography and smart editing that shows the photos to great effect--even the ones that don't make the cut. And the film is packed with terrific, telling moments. Forget The Devil Wears Prada and Ugly Betty, this is the real deal.



Facts and Figures

Run time: 90 mins

In Theaters: Thursday 20th August 2009

Box Office USA: $3.7M

Distributed by: Roadside Attractions

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 4 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 83%
Fresh: 92 Rotten: 19

IMDB: 7.0 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director: RJ Cutler

Producer: RJ Cutler, Eliza Hindmarch, Sadia Shepard

Starring: as Herself, as Himself, Grace Coddington as Herself, Tonne Goodman as Herself

Contactmusic


Links


Advertisement

New Movies

Star Wars: The Last Jedi Movie Review

Star Wars: The Last Jedi Movie Review

After the thunderous reception for J.J. Abrams' Episode VII: The Force Awakens two years ago,...

Daddy's Home 2 Movie Review

Daddy's Home 2 Movie Review

Like the 2015 original, this comedy plays merrily with cliches to tell a silly story...

The Man Who Invented Christmas Movie Review

The Man Who Invented Christmas Movie Review

There's a somewhat contrived jauntiness to this blending of fact and fiction that may leave...

Ferdinand Movie Review

Ferdinand Movie Review

This animated comedy adventure is based on the beloved children's book, which was published in...

Brigsby Bear Movie Review

Brigsby Bear Movie Review

Director Dave McCary makes a superb feature debut with this offbeat black comedy, which explores...

Battle of the Sexes Movie Review

Battle of the Sexes Movie Review

A dramatisation of the real-life clash between tennis icons Billie Jean King and Bobby Riggs,...

Shot Caller Movie Review

Shot Caller Movie Review

There isn't much subtlety to this prison thriller, but it's edgy enough to hold the...

Advertisement
The Disaster Artist Movie Review

The Disaster Artist Movie Review

A hilariously outrageous story based on real events, this film recounts the making of the...

Stronger Movie Review

Stronger Movie Review

Based on a true story about the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing, this looks like one...

Only the Brave Movie Review

Only the Brave Movie Review

Based on a genuinely moving true story, this film undercuts the realism by pushing its...

Wonder Movie Review

Wonder Movie Review

This film may be based on RJ Palacio's fictional bestseller, but it approaches its story...

Happy End  Movie Review

Happy End Movie Review

Austrian auteur Michael Haneke isn't known for his light touch, but rather for hard-hitting, award-winning...

Patti Cake$ Movie Review

Patti Cake$ Movie Review

Seemingly from out of nowhere, this film generates perhaps the biggest smile of any movie...

The Limehouse Golem Movie Review

The Limehouse Golem Movie Review

A Victorian thriller with rather heavy echoes of Jack the Ripper, this film struggles to...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.