Monday, August 2, 2010

The September Issue

This documentary follows Vogue editor-in-chief Anna Wintour and her staff on the fashion runways, at photo shoots, and within the Vogue offices in Times Square as they prepare the September 2007 issue of the magazine. The September issue is important because, as one staff member puts it, September is the "January in fashion. This is when I change." The September issue is also the thickest, often being compared to a telephone book.

Wintour, originally from London, grew up with 1960s fashion influences and is actually the first to use celebrities in fashion. Today we always see celebrities on magazine covers, but in the past only fashion models were used. Wintour is often described as cold, and we see why, as staff members get worked up when she rejects ideas ("I wanna kill myself.") In addition to Wintour, the documentary follows around Grace Coddington, the magazine's creative director and a fashion stylist. Originally from northern Wales, Coddington modeled for Vogue as a teenager before traveling to London to model full-time. When an auto accident ended her modeling career Coddington started work as British Vogue Junior Editor and then worked her way up. Coddington is unique in that she's a fashion stylist that actually touches the models and also retains a romantic notion about photography and fashion.

I enjoyed this documentary and found it very fascinating to look at what goes into creating an issue of a magazine. I especially liked watching Grace Coddington's photoshoots. Watching her work was definitely the highlight of the movie for me. When she re-shoots the color blocking photographs, she comes up with an idea that includes the documentary cameraman, Bob. After seeing the finished photos Wintour makes a comment that the photo needs retouching and that Bob needs to go to the gym; upon hearing Wintour's response, Coddington makes a call that she absolutely does not want his tummy airbrushed. Awesome!

This DVD set includes an entire disc of special features. One deleted scene finds Wintour upset about "horrible white plastic buckets of ice." Even if you don't check out the special features, after watching this movie you'll never look at a fashion magazine the same again.
Find it in the catalog!