The Devil Wears Prada (Widescreen DVD-Video)
B- Sound: B- Extras: B- Film: B-
what producer Wendy Finerman says, The
Devil Wears Prada (2006) is not the first film ever made about the fashion
industry. Besides a cycle of films (and
Music Videos) taking place on runways like the late Robert Altman’s
underappreciated Ready To Wear (Pret-A-Porter), there was (even if it
was restricted to a magazine photographer and models) Stanley Donen’s classic
musical Funny Face (1957) with Audrey
Hepburn and Fred Astaire. To say this
film is about the fashion industry is like saying Gone With The Wind is about The Civil War.
that industry is strongly represented in its background, but the real story
focuses on a young lady (Anne Hathaway) anxious to get a new job and one in
publishing surfaces that is more prestigious than she realizes since she is not
a fan of fashion. Arriving for her
interview, she is warned by the boss’ personal secretary (Emily Blunt in a
solid comic performance) that Miranda Priestly (Meryl Streep in one of her best
juicy roles ever) is no-nonsense and everyone in the building fears her. This does not phase the new prospect, who
marches in once Miranda arrives and has their interview. Miranda is difficult as can be, making anyone
wonder why anyone would want to work for her, but she knows the employment she
offers is so sought that she can act anyway she wants. Andy (Hathaway) as she is called gets the job
simply because Miranda cannot believe anyone like Andy exists. Then the fun begins.
moderate hit in the U.S. doing the “women’s audience” business expected, the
entire industry went into shock when this became a huge surprise blockbuster
overseas. Held up as an early awards
contender, the film gets off to a great start with a montage set to K.T.
Tunstall’s Suddenly I See from
her terrific Eye To The Telescope album (reviewed
elsewhere on this site).
The film has a great pace to match its energy and everyone
in the cast is so good and well directed that few films have been so smooth
this year throughout. The only issues
are the conclusion pushing believability and that the script is more interested
in its comedy sometime than the world it inhabits. The problem is that the film treats the
industry with kid gloves too much throughout, whereas if it had not, an extra
edge would have been introduced to Aline Brosh McKenna’s screenplay adaptation
of the hit Lauren Weisberger book.
Otherwise, this is a solid film that people are talking about for good
reason and Hathaway’s star continues to rise.
Stanley Tucci and Adrian Grenier also star.
anamorphically enhanced 2.35 X 1 image is not bad, as shot by cinematographer
Florian Ballhaus, following interesting work on the Jodie Foster hit Flightplan. It seems that only the DVD definition and
some slight softness in the transfer is holding the look of the film back. Detail is good, but is lacking here and
there. No wonder Fox plans on making
this one of their first Blu-ray titles.
The Dolby Digital 5.1 mix is not bad for a non-action, dialogue-based
comedy with some wit. The combination is
just fine for this format.
include a feature length audio commentary with Director David Frankel, Producer
Wendy Finerman and Costume Designer Patricia Field, four featurettes ("Trip to the Big Screen" "NYC and Fashion" "Fashion Visionary Patricia Field" &
"Getting Valentino"), 15
Deleted Scenes, the original theatrical trailer and a gag reel that shows the
kind of energy behind the scenes that made this film work. If you missed it then, catch it now. If you like the humor and situations, you’ll
find The Devil Wears Prada a
- Nicholas Sheffo