The Devil Wears Prada
Read the book first before seeing the film as always. Different endings and I like the movie's ending better because everything squares out. Anne Hathaway is divine, will she ever get as big an actress as Julia Roberts, I wonder. Every feature in her pretty face is big, eyes, nose, mouth, forehead. But taken together she is downright beautiful. She can hold her own with the rest of her league, which would probably be Natalie Portman and even Reese Witherspoon. She must have bagged the role of Andrea Sachs because it is quite similar to her role in the Princes Diaries series. The ugly-duckling-turned-swan formula suits her perfectly because she can look both scraggly and exquisite.
This is one film where men are merely ornaments, two unknown actors played her love interest but there's not much happening there. Besides, she isn't even the “devil” in the title, the devil is actually the inimitable Meryl Streep, as Miranda Priestly, editor in chief of “Runway” fashion mag. It just has to be said that the Lauren Weisberger's book from which the film was loosely based on was semi-autobiographical as Weisberger worked as an assistant to “Vogue” magazine's fashion editor Anne Wintour. So Andy Sachs is actually Weisberger, Miranda Priestly is Anne Wintour, the “Runway” is “Vogue” and the publishing outfit Elias-Clarke is Conde Nast.
So Andy works as second assistant to Miranda and the work is running errands but the circles she runs in are of course fabulous. The film paints a pretty picture of the world of fashion where Andy is a poor fit. Miranda once described her as the smart fat girl. Meryl must have enjoyed the role, she lost a lot of weight to play it right and it is something she can truly sink her sharp teeth into. In the world of fashion merchandising she is the queen bee, dictating what everyone should be wearing. Meryl looked all glassy and glossed over and she has a monologue where she cut Andrea down to size with her brilliance, she described Andrea's cerulean blue knit top as coming from an unfortunate lump of discarded stuff. Miranda's character is mostly in the soft-spoken almost inaudible manner with which she dishes out sarcasm and disdain. It was classic Meryl Streep acting at its best.
Other characters in the film included a British actress who played Emily, the highly efficient but neurotic first assistant. Stanley Tucci played a gay fashion consultant who become's Andrea's fairy god mother. He was responsible for Andy's transformation from a plain jane to one of the “clackers” (woman in the fashion industry), a name coined by Andy owing to the sound the high heels of these women make on the marble floor.
The film might not go down as a classic but it sure was a fun ride. I just hope they think of doing a film version of Sophie Kinsella's “Shopaholic” book series.