The Devil Wears Prada
What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that the movie features cruel judgments about body size and fashion. Characters are materialistic and catty (usually as comedy, though some hurtful comments are also made). Characters use mild language (s--t) and drink alcohol. Lots of mentions of high-end fashion brands. Younger kids won't be interested, since the subject matter won't mean anything to them.
What's the story?
In THE DEVIL WEARS PRADA, socially conscious journalism major Andy (Anne Hathaway) takes a job at Runway fashion magazine as second assistant to ruthless editor Miranda (Meryl Streep). Andy is told repeatedly that if she survives a year, she'll be able to get a job at any magazine, but has no idea how tough her year will be: Her primary jobs are fetching coffee and outfits from various designers around town, and running personal errands for Miranda. Andy is also at the beck and call of first assistant Emily (Emily Blunt). Worse, she's reminded daily that her clothes are ugly and that she's "fat" (at size six). Art director Nigel (Stanley Tucci) gives Andy a makeover and devotes herself to pleasing Miranda, leaving her live-in boyfriend Nate (Adrian Grenier) and best friend Lilly (Tracie Thoms) feeling abandoned. But even as she's seduced by a cynical writer (Simon Baker) and enticed by the sense of power the fashion folks claim for themselves, Andy never loses her moral sensibility.
Is it any good?
Sometimes over-the-top and sometimes sentimental, Prada is most notable for Meryl Streep's remarkably subtle performance as super-diva Miranda Priestly. While the movie loves its costumes and montages (often together), the plot is creaky and the target far too easy: Everyone knows the world of haute couture is cutthroat, imperious, and lurid.
Streep's Miranda is complex and compelling. Though her outfits and superciliousness are as outrageous as everyone else's, Miranda tends to speak quickly and quietly, to assume her supremacy even as she's vulnerable.
Families can talk about...
Families can talk about Andy's plan to use her assistant job as a route to becoming a journalist: How does she rationalize this choice? How does Andy learn to fit into the world of high fashion by wearing the right clothes, dieting, and becoming increasingly judgmental of others? What messages does the movie send about the importance of physical appearances?