The Devil Wears Nada
Now this is some Jim Wynorski treasure! The Devil Wears Nada is a fantastic achievement of fun story and sexy content, while still being ridiculous and creative. Wynorski can produce magic if he’s into it, and from the creativity he gives behind and in front of the camera, you can tell he’s having a ball here
The Devil Wears Nada takes its name (obviously) from The Devil Wears Prada, and here we also have an overbearing boss at a fashion magazine lording over her newest assistant. Things go a bit further here, Julia Crimson is far worse of a boss than Miranda Priestley. The humiliation becomes more sexual, though Candy seems to have no problem having sex with her boss or a random male model even under threat of termination. It is revealed that Julia Crimson is blackmailing another character (via more sexual humiliation – incriminating photos) and gets a comeuppance that we never saw in the Glenn Close film. Turning the boss into more of a caricature does make things more fun and removes a bit of moral ambiguity.
The Devil Wears Nada gives another chance to go over the themes of its inspiration movie, with the overworked assistant at a magazine dealing with a nightmare boss and the promise of future rewards if she just sticks through all the crap she has to go through. Thanks to the job market in the US imploding, the scenario plays out like a lot of the unpaid internships that seems to be more of the rule than exception at magazines. These internships are often just unpaid 60 hour workweek jobs in expensive cities that only the rich can afford to go through, creating an artificial barrier in the magazine industry. These internships have become increasingly controversial and are technically illegal in some areas, but persist. In addition, they are often defended by those that have gone through them as a necessary part of magazine production, creating a self-feeding destructive cycle that causes many in the industry to turn a blind eye to its own failings (as rocking the boat might just cost your your job in a very competitive field!)
The Devil Wears Prada deals with the struggle that professional women tangle with, their careers or their personal lives. The Devil Wears Nada is of the opinion that you can have your cake and eat it too, and the terrible boss is just an obstacle to overcome. Candy’s defeat of Julia Crimson (and subsequent promotion to co-boss along with former assistant Becca Saperstein) is a result of playing by Julia’s own rules, but turning them around, and is accomplished by the various people Julia Crimson has wronged banding together. When Prada was released, it featured a lot of backlash from former employees of Anna Wintour condemning the book as a mean-spirited gotcha, and that author Lauren Weisberger did not appreciate the opportunities the job presented her. This circling the wagons to defend treating employees terribly is not conductive to a good business environment, and makes the defenders look like they need to justify their own abuse (and is mirrored by the aforementioned unpaid internship defenses!) Nada‘s rejects this in favor of a socialistic workers utopia where the workers team up with a money man to eliminate strife and bring peace to the land (and get rewarded!) Not only does this unionization bring strength to the workers, but Julia Crimson is such a threat that people team together regardless of class affiliation to eliminate her as a problem. Nada offers a vision where hard work and creativity are rewarded, and by working together more is accomplished than everyone suffering separately. In this spirit, Nada defeats Prada in the messaging.
But The Devil Wears Nada is not without its own problems. Candy is coerced into sexual relations in order to save her job, and male characters such as the model Michael are willing participants. And as mentioned, Candy and Becca’s eventual winning of the editors-in-chief job is awarded by a male money man, showing that despite all their work, things still resolve because a male decides. If these tradeoffs are enough to keep Nada as a strong and smart women get ahead film, or if they condemn it to an also-ran status is up to the viewer. I feel that Nada sends more postive messages than negative, and this is doubly so considering it is in the softcore genre, a section of film where far too often women are just treated as objects.
The cast list for The Devil Wears Nada is abysmal, with many people going uncredited. Luckily powerfred at SoftcoreReviews (NSFW link – http://www.sreviews.com/smf/index.php?topic=4619.0 ) confirmed most of the unlisted actresses (with some help from Jim!) So enjoy the mostly complete credits. Some actresses are unknown, and many characters don’t have spoken names. Wynorski packed The Devil Wears Nada to the gills with hot chicks, almost doubling the average cast size for one of these softcore flicks.