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The Director – Film Review

December 27, 2015

The Director (2013) is the perfect film to show to a 15 year old girl, eager to go into fashion. “Look where you could end up!” you might say. Frida Giannini is the Director in the film; the Creative Director of Gucci in fact.


Not that the film ever introduces her with her full name, or explains just what a Creative Director is. It doesn’t introduce the other people she works with either, nor explain which of the four shows we see her preparing are which (for reference, they are Autumn/Winter 2012 Ready-to-Wear, Autumn/Winter 2012 Menswear, Spring/Summer 2013 Ready-to-Wear and another that I’m not sure of, possibly a resort collection or one made specially for the Asian market, shown in Shanghai).

The Director of Everything

It turns out that a Creative Director is everything: she picks the models, watches them practicing walking, she oversees the floral arrangements of the shows, and most importantly, she designs the clothes with her team. She does all this in a marvellously decisive fashion, like a parody of a steely fashion woman (like Meryl Streep in The Devil Wears Prada, in fact) “Yes, yes, no, no, these hems are awful, all I see is the awful hems. This boy has the face of an angel, doesn’t know how to walk.”

The Determined

In fact in The Director she is more charming than that, she’s quite funny too, although her little rags to riches tale doesn’t quite gel. Sitting in the family holiday home which was once owned by film director Pasolini and where the Sixties film stars came to party she explains how the family was once in a tight spot and couldn’t pay her extremely expensive school tuition. She won a scholarship. She decided she must get a job at the age of 22, and hawked her portfolio around, eventually being offered four interviews all on the same day, and three jobs, two of which were very good and one more or less an internship, slave labour, but this is the one she chose as she had a boyfriend in Rome… How romantic. Except this was with “a big company” and it was the one which made her name.

The Director and the Model

Going back to the Gucci job in the Director. She seems to have a soft spot for the young male models. In an interview she is asked how she chooses models “Well, often I choose boys that look natural and shrewd,” she answers “I have to admit that the selection is very instinctual”. “Don’t you like the idea of a mature man on the catwalk?” “No, honestly I’m not interested at the moment”. “Why?” “When you envision a fashion show, you think about a dream… And when I want to dream, I like to work with youth.” And she is very forgiving of the model who can’t walk in proper grown up shoes. “Normally I wear sneakers” he admits, shamefaced. She makes him do a couple of turns. “You have to think that you are a Gucci Boy. You have to be very confident, very sensual, very powerful. You are the most beautiful man in the world” she encourages the teenager. I’m actually quite surprised, don’t models have coaches? I mean, that’s the two things they do, be very beautiful, and walk up and down. So I am surprised they are hired on beauty alone, but perhaps the walk of “The Gucci Boy” is easily mastered.


Overall The Director is an interesting, but not thrilling or pacy, peek into a big fashion house.




Frida Giannini Creative Director of Gucci at work ( Photo Credit- The Directors Movie)

Frida Giannini Creative Director of Gucci ( Photo Credit- The Directors Movie)
Frida Giannini Creative Director of Gucci ( Photo Credit- The Directors Movie)

A still from The Director