How fashion can shape a film

D.the French have channels. And of course Dior, Yves Saint Laurent, Celine, Chloé. But let’s stay with Chanel, because Chanel will hit the screens this fall, at least in French cinemas. This is neither the film adaptation of the life of Coco Chanel nor the work of Karl Lagerfeld (the film will follow next year, starring Jared Leto). “Simone, le voyage du siècle”, on the other hand, is now dedicated to Simone Veil, a woman who certainly did not go down in history for fashion but for many other things. As first woman in various senior political posts. As Minister of Health, you ensured that abortion was legalized in France. It was 1975.

Defender of abortion rights and Chanel client

Jennifer Wiebking

Editor in the “Life” department of the Sunday newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine.

In all these activities and shows, she wore Chanel again and again. High-necked costumes, often patterned, more armor than props, suited to the urgencies of their concerns. Simone Velo was also one customer, as the particularly good customers of traditional Parisian shops are called. That’s why the tight tweed suits in this film, which has been in French cinemas since last week, had to be Chanel originals.

In Chanel: scene from Simone Velo's film


In Chanel: scene from Simone Velo’s film
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Image: wonderful productions


The film on the veil is an example of how fashion in the cinema is seen from an unusual perspective. Neither as a serious account of this or that designer, as they have raced over and over over the past few years, nor as an expression of a fun or empty lifestyle, but simply as part of a good story. Incidentally, this fashion tells a country’s self-image. So France has Chanel.

The world still speaks of the “Sibyl” 33 years after the fall of the Wall

The Chanel of the GDR, if you like, was called Exquisit, the socialist version of a high fashion label, and even that, in the packaging with the “Sibylle” magazine, was a cultural asset that the world would still remember for 33 years after which fall of the wall speak out. The film about it, “In a country that no longer exists”, has been in German cinemas for a few weeks now and takes a different look at the GDR, its small critical fashion scene and the parallel machine in the name of Glamor for the socialism.

There are images of the Baltic Sea, which recall the work of Ute and Werner Mahler for the “Sibyl” of the time; both were now involved in the project. There are models, which at that time were not called only mannequins in the East. And there is the editor-in-chief of this magazine with the most beautiful phrases of the editor-in-chief: “Beige? We are not talking about ‘Brigitte’ ”. And even more beautiful: “Beauty is a promise that there is something beyond mediocrity where calm reigns”. This is finally the case with this fashion film.

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