"Prada" Boss Drives Away Everyone and Everything But Blind Ambition


The Devil Wears Prada – 2 Stars (Average)

Meryl Streep, one of Hollywood's best and most honored actresses, carries The Devil Wears Prada like the namesake handbag we see early in this movie, which is about a powerful New York fashion magazine editor and her wannabe gofer.

Streep, a graduate of Vassar and the Yale School of Drama, has 13 nominations for an Academy Award, more than any other actor. Streep has 10 nominations for Best Actress and 3 for Best Supporting Actress.

She won Oscars for Kramer vs. Kramer (Best Supporting Actress) and for Sophie's Choice (Best Actress).

In The Devil Wears Prada, Miranda Priestly (Streep) is the editor of Runway fashion magazine (modeled after Vogue). She hires Andy Sachs (Anne Hathaway), a recent journalism grad, to be her new gofer. Andy supposedly wants this opportunity to grovel for an iron-willed, focused Miranda who would intimidate her favorite pet if she had one.

In her new job Andy does not write a memo much less a news story. She picks up Miranda's cleaning and coffee and fulfills other outrageous requests of the spoiled editor who believes she is the cat's meow.

The plot line involving Andy is specious in that no serious journalist would ever work for a Miranda Priestly in the role of a gofer. She would rather work for a weekly newspaper than the New York Times if she had to put with the crap that Andy had to put up with. This is especially true of anyone with talent who has integrity.

It is possible to get ahead on talent alone without integrity but doing so over a period of time molds you into a lower life form.

I know as I spent 20 years in the news business as a reporter, investigative reporter, sports editor and managing editor for a daily newspaper, and owner of a community publishing company.

Miranda Priestly had such demands as "Find me that piece of paper I had in my hand yesterday morning." Steep played her role very well.

Andy supposedly has a metamorphosis from a naïve, plain, simple girl into a trendy, elegant gofer, and manages to do so with the help of Nigel (Stanley Tucci), the magazine's art director.

In the end, she ditches the job when she realizes that life without her boyfriend, her friends and family are not worth the price of being exclusive. Her career move into the fashion world pushes people out of her life as her career demands suck time away from all her other relationships.

She ends up getting a job offer as a journalist with the New York Mirror, a real newspaper that ceased publishing in 1898.

I want to believe this film has a more serious message about commitments by young adults, but Andy slinks back to her live-in boyfriend, who has secured a new position as a sous-chef in another city. The film does not make it clear wherever Andy goes with her boyfriend, stays in New York with her new job, or visits him in his new digs when she wants companionship.


The ending of this movie is as lame as Andy's choice of a new job as a gofer.

A successful person of substance does not lead the kind of life Andy leads, since The Devil Wears Prada becomes an average movie because it ignores a chance to make an even more important point about what is important in life, love and romance.

Copyright © 2007 Ed Bagley

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Ed Bagley


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