12 Of The Best Fashion Films of 2017 – Forbes
Six years ago, very few people knew about or made fashion films. Thatâs changing fast. The number of fashion film festivals is growing every year and festivals like the Lajolla International Fashion Film Festival which is the biggest worldwide, is attracting major attention from Hollywood. In 2018 it may be a new category at the Academy awards.
So, what are fashion films? Some see fashion films as advertising, particularly the oneâs from the big fashion houses like Chanel, Prada and Etro, but I would argue that even when they are, these films are bringing us into relationships with clothing in entirely new ways. They take us into worlds of beauty, adventure, revenge, inspiration and dreams and letâs face it, thatâs why we wear clothes. We dress to explore who we are, dare to be different or connect with people by fitting in. We dream of beautiful clothes the way we dream of careers and success (partially to buy the clothes?). Take films like The Magic Kingdom by John Lambert which won best picture, where the story of Sergio Rossi shoes is told through three modern princesses cavorting around the factory. We are entertained, charmed and transported into what it means to love shoes rather than just being told we should buy them.
On the other end of the spectrum, are the artistic fashion films that donât support the sale of any product but rather seek to create experiences. While some of these are good, the majority fail to engage due to lack of storytelling and an over reliance on our attention span for dramatic make-up, bored looking models, a moving element (water, smoke, wind) depressing music and slow-motion editing.
The best of course, is when films manage to do both, transport us on a journey, inspire us with breathtaking visuals and connect us with great stories. The following are the best in all three categories from the Lajolla Fashion Film Festival. They represent the heart and sweat of directors from Italy, China, South America, Germany, France and Denmark who are largely creating this new medium out of love and out of their own pockets. The films deal with issues we are all familiar with, our nostalgia for the past, the power and beauty of nature and the human form, our fears of the future, and women coming into their own.
BEST ENGAGING SUBJECT MATTER
Statures of Gods by George and Ted Schilowitz
Statures of Gods won for Best Cinematography. The filmâs slow motion editor of dancers against a backdrop of Paris allows us to delve into the abandon and beauty of movement that is possible with the human body. A stunning and inspiring visual montage.
The Magic Kingdom by Director John Huddles
The Magic Kingdom won Best Picture and is a playful romp through Sergio’s shoe making process and pulls from Alice in Wonderland and Snow White. Great editing builds up to the magic moment when each of the three models receives her beautifully crafted Sergio shoes. Stunning visual storytelling and color scheme as well as shoes most women would die for guarantees this is a film audiences will love.
Elemental Beauty by Adam Fisher
Itâs rare that a fashion film inspired by nature actually works as more than a beautiful montage of photographs, but Elemental Beauty succeeds and then some. Based on the four elements of fire, water, earth and air, the film won Best Editing and you can see why. The interplay between each dancer/model, the elements and music is mesmerizing and so powerful it will leave you breathless. A true feast for the eyes and the spirit.