Wednesday, December 01, 2010
Why the Movie "Autumn in New York" Sucks: a Milliner's Perspective
"Have you seen Autumn in New York?"
There was a time when I hadn't seen it, but then enough people mentioned it to me and I caved. We rented it and I watched, waiting for the fantastic millinery presence.
I can't judge the movie for it's cinematic characteristics—I'm easy to please and rarely dislike a movie. So I won't tell you that it was predictable and kind of schlocky. I will say that the millinery portion of the movie was a disappointment.
First point of contention: The client in the movie, played by Richard Gere, asks the character of Winona Ryder to design a hat "inspired by the curve in a woman's hip." Nice. I couldn't wait for it. What she delivered resembled absolutely no part of the female anatomy. When your client asks you to interpret something, you do it. You don't just say, "That's not really what I feel like doing today, so how about this big pile of sticks instead?"
Second point of contention (please forgive the extended background information): In asking Winona's character to make a hat, Gere was actually trying to lure the young milliner into going to a fancy event with him. So she was unknowingly designing a hat for herself. He tells Ryder's character that his date couldn't make it but he happens to have a gown that will fit her perfectly. Curious. Time comes for the event. She's got the fabulous dress, great shoes, an interesting shawl... Wait a second. Where's the @#%&! hat? She's not wearing it! You have got to be kidding me. And they don't even mention it. That she didn't wear the hat to the event says two things: One, that the Gere character didn't take her millinery work seriously, and/or Two, that the creators of this movie have it's details loosely tied together with cobwebs.
As a milliner, I took great offense to the product of labor not being shown. But hey, it's a movie, right? I shouldn't take a work of fiction so seriously. But now I've watched it, so if you come to me and rave about it and ask me if I've seen it... Well, expect an earful.