PopMatters is moving to WordPress. We will publish a few essays daily while we develop the new site. We hope the beta will be up sometime late next week.
Reviews

Eleven Minutes

McCarroll’s exuberant personality is at the heart of his popularity and the documentary's appeal.


Eleven Minutes

Distributor: E1 Entertainment
Directors: Michael Seiditch and Rob Tate
Release date: 2010-02-26

Eleven Minutes chronicles fashion designer Jay McCarroll’s path in creating Transport, his 2006 fashion show following his win on Project Runway’s first season. McCarroll’s place in the fashion industry can be directly tied into his participation in Project Runway, a fact that he struggles with throughout the documentary. The link between McCarroll as reality television personality and serious fashion designer is at the core of the documentary’s focus and co-directors and producers Michael Seiditch and Rob Tate make every effort to highlight this.

The year-long process in preparing for this fashion show involved everything from designing to producing to working with shoe, jewelry, and hair assistants to managing publicity for the show. McCarroll’s exuberant personality is at the heart of his popularity. He is refreshingly honest about his advantages in the fashion world due to his time on Project Runway, as well as in his dealings with his assistants and especially his publicist, Nancy Kane. However, he frequently makes it a point to stress that despite his good fortune, there is still an immense amount of work to be done.

Much of the conflict in the documentary comes from his working relationship with those on his team. Kelly Cutrone of People’s Revolution is a particularly vocal member of this team and her experience in the field often manifests itself in her no holds barred opinions and advice. Cutrone and McCarroll are frequently shown to be at odds in terms of the direction of the collection, its promotion, and even in such details as the fashion show’s invitations. Despite their sometimes contentious relationship, McCarroll does an admirable job of trying to understand and take into account Cutrone’s advice, even if he doesn’t always follow it. Usually this leads to humorous cell phone conversation asides to his friends and assistants.

McCarroll’s relationship with Kane is another of the more antagonistic ones depicted in the documentary. Alternately critical and fawning, Kane has big plans for McCarroll and at times her frustration with his wholly independent streak brings them to harsh confrontations. At one point, there is a huge blowout between Cutrone and Kane that devolves into personal attacks, only to be swept under the rug the following day. Clearly, these are big personalities accustomed to voicing any and all opinions they have and McCarroll is often caught in the middle.

McCarroll often seems to be in over his head, creating an almost underdog quality to his show – a somewhat contradictory idea considering the level of his success as a young, struggling designer. However, the sheer time, energy, and monetary investment necessary to launch a line and a show at New York’s Bryant Park is no small thing. McCarroll’s humor and unflinching honesty make the process more than a dry business plan come to life.

His popularity on Project Runway was certainly aided by his engaging personality. McCarroll shifts from flippant to harried to emotional throughout the documentary and again, it is easy to understand his appeal outside of his skills as a fashion designer – even surrounded by people with an obvious stake in his success, he never seems to take himself too seriously.

One of the more interesting aspects of this production focuses on the work that goes into launching an actual sellable line after the show. McCarroll repeatedly refers to all the requests he gets over email from his fans for information on when his clothes will be available in stores. Watching the pitches to different buyers, it is clear just how much of a gamble the entire the really is. There are no guarantees that the amount of work spent on them will assure his clothes a place in the market.

While the subject of this documentary has all the elements to make it a fascinating glimpse into this highly competitive world, there are moments throughout the production that drag on and offer little insight into the work. For instance, some of the time spent with his jewelry and shoe designers could have better been spent on Mccarroll’s working process. Perhaps because this was such an integral part of his time on Project Runway it was decided that it was less important to focus on, but the documentary suffers for it.

Bonus features include deleted scenes, interviews with Seiditch and Tate, and a slideshow of McCarroll’s sketches. None of these are essential or even especially illuminating, but they may be of interest to more serious fashion fans.

6

Please Donate to Help Save PopMatters

PopMatters have been informed by our current technology and hosting provider that we have less than a month, until November 6, to move PopMatters off their service or we will be shut down. We are moving to WordPress and a new host, but we really need your help to save the site.


Music

Books

Film

Recent
Music

Laura Veirs Talks to Herself on 'My Echo'

The thematic connections between these 10 Laura Veirs songs and our current situation are somewhat coincidental, or maybe just the result of kismet or karmic or something in the zeitgeist.

Film

15 Classic Horror Films That Just Won't Die

Those lucky enough to be warped by these 15 classic horror films, now available on Blu-ray from The Criterion Collection and Kino Lorber, never got over them.

Music

Sixteen Years Later Wayne Payne Follows Up His Debut

Waylon Payne details a journey from addiction to redemption on Blue Eyes, The Harlot, The Queer, The Pusher & Me, his first album since his 2004 debut.

Music

Every Song on the Phoenix Foundation's 'Friend Ship' Is a Stand-Out

Friend Ship is the Phoenix Foundation's most personal work and also their most engaging since their 2010 classic, Buffalo.

Music

Kevin Morby Gets Back to Basics on 'Sundowner'

On Sundowner, Kevin Morby sings of valleys, broken stars, pale nights, and the midwestern American sun. Most of the time, he's alone with his guitar and a haunting mellotron.

Music

Lydia Loveless Creates Her Most Personal Album with 'Daughter'

Given the turmoil of the era, you might expect Lydia Loveless to lean into the anger, amplifying the electric guitar side of her cowpunk. Instead, she created a personal record with a full range of moods, still full of her typical wit.

Music

Flowers for Hermes: An Interview with Performing Activist André De Shields

From creating the title role in The Wiz to winning an Emmy for Ain't Misbehavin', André De Shields reflects on his roles in more than four decades of iconic musicals, including the GRAMMY and Tony Award-winning Hadestown.

Film

The 13 Greatest Horror Directors of All Time

In honor of Halloween, here are 13 fascinating fright mavens who've made scary movies that much more meaningful.

Music

British Jazz and Soul Artists Interpret the Classics on '​Blue Note Re:imagined'

Blue Note Re:imagined provides an entrance for new audiences to hear what's going on in British jazz today as well as to go back to the past and enjoy old glories.

Film

Bill Murray and Rashida Jones Add Another Shot to 'On the Rocks'

Sofia Coppola's domestic malaise comedy On the Rocks doesn't drown in its sorrows -- it simply pours another round, to which we raise our glass.

Music

​Patrick Cowley Remade Funk and Disco on 'Some Funkettes'

Patrick Cowley's Some Funkettes sports instrumental renditions from between 1975-1977 of songs previously made popular by Donna Summer, Herbie Hancock, the Temptations, and others.

Music

The Top 10 Definitive Breakup Albums

When you feel bombarded with overpriced consumerism disguised as love, here are ten albums that look at love's hangover.

Music

Dustin Laurenzi's Natural Language Digs Deep Into the Jazz Quartet Format with 'A Time and a Place'

Restless tenor saxophonist Dustin Laurenzi runs his four-piece combo through some thrilling jazz excursions on a fascinating new album, A Time and a Place.

Television

How 'Watchmen' and 'The Boys' Deconstruct American Fascism

Superhero media has a history of critiquing the dark side of power, hero worship, and vigilantism, but none have done so as radically as Watchmen and The Boys.

Music

Floodlights' 'From a View' Is Classicist Antipodal Indie Guitar Pop

Aussie indie rockers, Floodlights' debut From a View is a very cleanly, crisply-produced and mixed collection of shambolic, do-it-yourself indie guitar music.

Music

CF Watkins Embraces a Cool, Sophisticated Twang on 'Babygirl'

CF Watkins has pulled off the unique trick of creating an album that is imbued with the warmth of the American South as well as the urban sophistication of New York.

Music

Helena Deland Suggests Imagination Is More Rewarding Than Reality on 'Something New'

Canadian singer-songwriter Helena Deland's first full-length release Someone New reveals her considerable creative talents.

Music

While the Sun Shines: An Interview with Composer Joe Wong

Joe Wong, the composer behind Netflix's Russian Doll and Master of None, articulates personal grief and grappling with artistic fulfillment into a sweeping debut album.


Reviews
Collapse Expand Reviews



Features
Collapse Expand Features

PM Picks
Collapse Expand Pm Picks

© 1999-2020 PopMatters.com. All rights reserved.
PopMatters is wholly independent, women-owned and operated.