House of Gucci: Review
House of Gucci is a sensational crime drama as scandalous and tragic as it is stylish and chic. Based on the true events that befell the fashion dynasty during the 1970s-1990s, the quiet Maurizio Gucci (Adam Driver) defies his father’s wish by marrying the humble Patrizia Reggiani (Lady Gaga), only for the cutthroat corporate culture of the fashion world to stick a stiletto-shaped wedge of greed and ambition between the couple, leading to the downfall of the divided and deceived Gucci house. Amongst a stellar cast that boasts the likes of an avuncular Al Pacino and outrageous Jared Leto, Gaga is the standout star, delivering the performance of her acting career as the “Joan Collins of Monte Napoleone”, a sneaky social-climbing fierce fashionista, who swears she’s more fun than Elizabeth Taylor. And you’ll believe her. Charm is part of Gaga’s tact, a flamboyant extrovert that hides a narcissistic drive and venomous insecurity. She walks like a coiled spring, a mistress of manipulation and provocation, and occasionally – when her wide-eyed gaze betrays her glut and rapacious regime for the Gucci household and her place at the centre of it – she is electric to watch…
Fashion, of course, is itself a character in this gorgeous film. Ignoring Coco Chanel’s famous advice to take one thing off before leaving the house, Reggiani’s penchant for golden accessories and ostentatious outfits is as equally important in capturing the flamboyancy of the Reggiani character as Gaga herself. Costume designer Janty Yates spoils the viewer with a lavish wardrobe, with an estimated 60-70 outfits for Gaga alone. Highlights range from Reggiani’s red dress – a figure-hugging long satin garment that steals both the viewer’s and Maurizio Gucci’s eye at a 1970s disco party, to the white and chequered shoulder-padded power-suits of the 1980s, complete with a classic black Chanel leather bag. Indeed, it is no easy task to capture three decades of fashion but such is achieved impeccably, creating a time capsule of the transcending eras whilst at the same time feeling timeless for how vogue the fashion is. Such classic looks will never not be fashionable, with vintage outfits worn by Gaga handpicked from the Gucci archives, from a Double-G silk blouse in tans and browns paired with a leather skirt to a Double-G tunic and flared trousers under a lush mink coat.
Yes, amidst all the wiggle dresses and luxe velvet suits, the iconic Double-G emblem is the predominate signature emblazoned throughout the film – at times a lucky charm and a passport into the elite social Gucci circle, but more often than not a poisoned chalice for Driver and Gaga, two tragedian lovers competing for the prestige of this noble house in a story of Shakespearian proportions. Gaga and Driver have excellent chemistry, with the former, not unlike a Lady Macbeth, pouring poisonous persuasive words into her malleable Maurrizio. Such is the skilful storytelling of director Ridley Scott, crafting an epic that is both luxurious and lyrical, spinning a tight tragedian trajectory for these modern Macbeths as smoothly as the finest Sicilian silk. It is a film that is sure to garner some Oscar buzz. Bravo!