Kenzo may not be holding a runway show this fashion month, but the brand still put its stamp on New York Fashion Week with the premiere of The Everything, a Kenzo-branded fashion film that has the potential to change the way people view the genre.
Directed and written by Humberto Leon, Kenzo’s co-creative director, The Everything abandons the many of the tropes typically associated with fashion films: a vague storyline, a run time of six minutes or less and an emphasis on visuals over words. Instead, The Everything not only has a true narrative, but a unique one: It tells the story of a family, each of whom has a “dumb power,” as Leon calls them. One character, Rose, can swap a person’s shoes with the snap of her fingers. Another, Shelly, can make nails (her own and other people’s) grow at super-speed. A character named Bobby can change people’s hairstyles at whim. These powers, as Leon says, are ones “that would do a lot even though they wouldn’t do much.”
As the kids in the family start exhibiting these powers, they and their mother—played by Milla Jovovich—struggle to accept and adapt to these newfound abilities. The whole thing comes to a head at a homecoming dance, which was filmed at Leon’s own alma mater (and his friends from high school served as extras).
Though each character is clad head-to-toe in Kenzo, the story is about their relationships with one another and the challenges of growing up. “I really wanted to tell a story about a family,” he said. “The clothes are secondary to the actors and actresses.”
However, the clothes, of course, still play a role. The story opens with Rose going to purchase a pair of newly-released sneakers (when her size is sold out, she uses her superpower to nab a pair from a fellow customer). For the homecoming dance, each of the characters gets dressed up in apparel that’s more likely to be seen on a high fashion runway than in a high school gym. Throughout the film, the characters wear Kenzo’s fall-winter 2018 collections—which are available for purchase now.
But the stylish garb is about the only thing that The Everything shares with other branded fashion films. Usually, Leon said, fashion films are more “imaginative,” with “little narrative,” and thus, are shorter in length. With The Everything’s more in-depth plot, Leon felt it required a longer run time than what he was originally budgeted.
“I thought, ‘you know what, I’m going to push this,'” Leon said. “I need the time to tell the story. It blurs lines and that’s something we like to do.”
The result, cast members said, was a filmmaking experience that mirrored the sets of commercial films and television shows that they’re typically on. “The same attention to detail that goes into a film was here,” said actor Jay Ellis, who played the father of the family. “This was about a story first. The fact that we got to be in beautiful clothes and look amazing was just a part of it.”
Jovovich added: “All you would have had to do is shoot for a few more weeks and you’d have a feature.”