Directed by David Frankel
Screenplay by Aline Brosh McKenna
Based on the novel by Lauren Weisberger
Starring: Meryl Streep, Anne Hathaway, Stanley Tucci
Andy Sachs (Hathaway) has just stumbled into the world of Miranda Priestly. Priestly (Streep) can make or break a career in the publishing business. As the head editor of Runway Magazine she is an equally intimidating figure in the fashion world. For Andy, this is a new job with unlimited possibilities. Unfortunately this is also a job that comes with a cost, something Andy soon figures out as she struggles to succeed.
It’s difficult to summarize a film like The Devil Wears Prada. The movie features a blend of drama and comedy within a coming-of-age story. Thankfully the story translated wonderfully onto the big screen. The screenplay, written by Aline Brosh McLenna (27 Dresses), is loosely based on the novel by Lauren Weisberger. The movie was directed by the talented David Frankel (Marley & Me).
The film stars the incomparable Meryl Streep (Out of Africa) in a role that winds up somewhere between Cruella Deville and the Wicked Witch of the West. She gives Miranda Priestly a powerful presence and cold sophistication that really make this story great. Opposite Streep is the talented Anne Hathaway (Les Misérables). Hathaway does an excellent job playing a character that evolves throughout the film. The film also features one of my favorite actors, Stanley Tucci (Road to Perdition).
The actors had a great story to work with. While the casting really found the right people, the writing brought them to life with excellent dialogue. With Hathaway’s character, the writing did a great job with evolving Andy from a fresh college graduate into a confident woman. Despite the cold nature of her character, Streep’s role was complex and interesting throughout the film. Overall, the writing allowed the characters to be flawed but not to the point of hatred for any one of them.
Visually, the movie does a lot of things right. The camera work is very clean and the editing is nicely done. The movie also features a wide range of great costumes that highlight the world of fashion that the story takes place in. The costuming also does a great job showing the world outside of fashion, drawing a clear line between the two. For the sake of the story this division is a great choice and was executed perfectly.
My only criticism of this movie is in the broad range of events. There are several smaller stories being told that seem to stretch a bit thin towards the middle of the film. It’s truly a question of whether the film might have been better with more or none of these events. It’s not something that really hurts the film, but it does seem to leave a few holes in the story.
Critic David Denby said, “The Devil Wears Prada tells a familiar story, and it never goes much below the surface of what it has to tell. Still, what a surface!” This is a sentiment that I can easily agree with. This is not a deep and intellectual film. This is a straightforward drama/comedy that really works well from start to finish. If you’re a fan of the stars of this one I would definitely suggest checking it out. I would also recommend this one to anyone who likes a good mix of comedy and drama. I give this one 4.5 out of 5 stars.