We all know who Dior is. The ostensible “I” in the film Dior and I is Raf Simons. We are introduced to Simons, as he takes over the House of Dior in Paris as creative director in 2012. He hails from Jil Sander, where he had created austere minimalist menswear for the commercial market since 2005. In his new role at Dior, Simons is presented as the opposite of its founder: Simons is ready-to-wear to Dior’s couture, minimalist to the master's baroque style, modern to Dior's reactionary sensibility. How will the new leader of the house bear the weight of the huge tradition of Dior, yet infuse the line with his own vision? Will he be able to pull it off...
It’s easy for us to be “simply mad” about Diana Vreeland, because she was, in her own words, “simply mad about everything!” The inimitable spirit of the late fashion icon infuses every inch of the fashion documentary Diana Vreeland: The Eye Has to Travel.
It’s a significant moment in time: Vogue magazine’s celebrating its 120th anniversary. And Editor-in-Chief Anna Wintour brings fashion editors, past and present, out from behind the pages of the tony fashion magazine for a photo shoot by Annie Liebovitz. The resulting image appears in the 2012 September issue, and shows a formidable group of women representing five-plus decades of fashion editors from the magazine, including Grace Coddington, Tonne Goodman, Polly Allen Mellen, Carlyne Cerf de Dudzeele, Camilla Nickerson, Phyllis Posnick and Babs Simpson. The fashion documentary, In Vogue: The Editor’s Eye, showcases these industry leaders, who are celebrated for their inimitable fashion spreads for Vogue and who Wintour calls the magazine’s “secret weapons”.
Director Whitney Smith sets off in a retro Camaro ostensibly searching for Halston at the beginning of his fashion documentary. Such a conceit is an early sign that Ultrasuede: In Search of Halston is going to quickly veer off course into the land of ‘70s cheese. Really, it’s doubtful that the designer who spent $100,000 a year of orchids or who arrived at parties by yacht with an entourage of models would have stepped foot in a Camaro. But Ultrasuede is less a thoughtful portrait of the man or designer than Smith’s projection of Halston as a symbol of Studio 54 and the excesses of the ‘70s.
Millions of people make the pilgrimage up a certain stretch of Fifth Avenue in New York City each year to see how the rich and famous spend their money. Its anchors of retail are Saks Fifth Avenue on one end and Bergdorf Goodman’s department store on the other. The documentary, Scatter My Ashes at Bergdorf’s, is made for them, the hoi polloi on the street. Like the Bergdorf’s windows at Christmas time that draw crowds each year, the film gives average joes a glimpse into a store that they probably can’t afford.