The September Issue

The movie sets out to do one thing-to document the making of 2007's September Issue of Vogue-compared to other months,this one's thicker by a few dozen pages and evidently a much bigger deal.Why?They don't say.In between photoshoots and some dry office drama-there's Wintour's long time friendship with her creative editor Grace Coddington,glimpses of homelife and numerous meetups with famous designers.To people at Vogue,the making of another issue must be exactly that-a routine procedure,a very technical process that allows for little creativity.They focus on the bigger picture-trends,textures,Sienna Miller's teeth on the covershot-stuff like that.And the bigger picture that emerges:the film that is,turns out equally dull and artless.On the physical side,the camera pretty much points and shoots-interviews are done in cars,squary offices,tiny and badly-lit rooms-and even as Wintour and her entourage travel across beautiful cities (Paris,London),we're afforded static and hedious images of tourist hotspots.At one point,the camera simply scans the Eiffel tower from base to top,honestly I've seen better,more atmospheric shots on The Hills or even fucking Law and Order.What I get from the film as a whole,is this overwhelming feeling of fatigue-a lack of inquisitiveness in the filmmakers,they handpick a bunch of characters in the machine and go about trailing them passively.Not to say I want them to start a commotion or something,but the way they've documented Vogue's inner workings and office culture-all too lazy and uninspiring.Wintour however,I'm more fascinated by from the experience-her cold manner and evasiveness has become part of her public name,and the public-ever hungry for human flaws-is quick to define her a stone-hearted bitch,and Wintour allows only one side of herself to be shown in this entire film.That is,she challenges and seeks to prove exactly: nothing.There's an attempt to sentimentalize things,especially when she mentions her siblings or in the interactions with her daughter-but no sappy violins or unflattering close-ups can stir genuine emotion,you're likely to leave the cinema feeling more perplexed and curious about the real Anna Wintour.And this induced state of wonder-is one upside of the film I'm willing to accept.


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