Intern isn't a particularly deep movie, but, to paraphrase Karl Lagerfeld, fashion is not the same thing as feeding the hungry and curing the ill.
Reviewed by Stephen MacMillan Moser, Fri., June 22, 2001
D: Michael Lange (2000); with Dominique Swain, Ben Pullen, Joan Rivers, Paulina Porizkova, Kathy Griffin, Leilani Bishop, David Deblinger, Peggy Lipton.
Bad reviews abound for this little-seen feature -- they consisted of lots of ugly sniping about the fashion business, gay stereotypes, superficiality, etc. But, please, let's get real here. Not every movie has to have deep subtext and meaning -- especially not movies about the fashion business. Written and executive produced by Jill Kopelman (daughter of the owner of the House of Chanel) and Caroline Doyle, the inside jokes and cameos run rampant in a movie that just misses being very clever. Saddled with a dreary romantic comedy subplot, Swain, most notable for 1997's Lolita, plays Jocelyn, an intern at Skirt magazine who becomes involved in fashion espionage. A very thin premise, to be sure, with a John Waters-ish feel to it, but with a breathless E! TV approach to fashion and comedy. Intern depends heavily on onscreen slapstick and cameo performances -- also like a John Waters film, though here we miss seeing Waters regular Patty Hearst. Peggy Lipton is a pleasant surprise as the fashion-victim fashion editor Roxanne Rochet, given to such statements as "Forget the herbal wrap -- I want a Himalayan rejuvenation lichen-berry acid peel." She and her staff are complete caricatures of fashionistas (they are devoting nine pages of their current issue to making wheelchairs the chic accessory), but they are right on the money -- especially Bishop as a vacuous, self-absorbed supermodel and Deblinger as a queeny art director. Paulina Porizkova, Anna Thompson, and comedienne Kathy Griffin are a little one-dimensional, but funny as well. Joan Rivers is Joan Rivers, and that's all we need to say about that. Intern isn't a particularly deep movie, but, to paraphrase Karl Lagerfeld, fashion is not the same thing as feeding the hungry and curing the ill.