Just one of the many high-fashion promotional items available for The Devil Wears Prada

Meryl Streep has declined an opportunity to vamp in this paint-by-numbers story of innocence corrupted. Streep instead plays her tyrant low-key. While the performance, to those unbaptized in the New York corporate media fires, might still appear over-the-top, it is in lockstep with the tales of woe I’ve heard from friends who worked for, say, Harry Caray.

Anne Hathaway is in the innocent role, half-attempting Audrey Hepburn, half-managing Julia Roberts. It would be more interesting to watch her transformation from Awkward Duckling to Ugly Swan if we hadn’t already seen it in her breakout Princess Diaries role. (If you haven’t seen The Princess Diaries, that means you’re a dude and you’re probably not going to see The Devil Wears Prada anyway.)

Beyond Streep’s performance, the main attraction the movie offers is

Continue reading about The Devil Wears Prada (no spoilers)… a glimpse into the real and vicious fashion world. There are lots of glamorous parties, and lots of fabulous clothes for Stanley Tucci’s token gay designer to wax poetic over. An empty shell, if you ask me. As cynically as the movie seems to approach haute couture, it doesn’t ever bring the knives out. One sensible character raises the question of why some women need to have many handbags. A satisfactory answer is never given.