Valentino-The Last Emperor…Of Big Hair

Apr 14, 2009People We Lerve
Valentino, a man who loved his QT Tan.

Valentino, a man who loves his QT Tan.

On Easter Sunday, I was invited to my friend Jules’ house for brunch at her loft filled with assorted fashionistas. The conversation landed on the documentary Valentino-The Last Emperor. A group of us in our champagne-bubbly-state planned to meet the following evening to see the film.

Nice dress doll.

Nice dress Marlene.

The good news is that most of the people that made the plan, showed up…how UN-fashionista of us. We met for the 10:00 pm showing (true commitment as I am usually in bed by then) and Jules’ friend brought his Pug in honor of the film. (The film also stars 5 of Valentino’s Pugs.) A festive, well-heeled (literally, women with great shoes) group waited patiently when all of a sudden, in walked Andre Leon Tally, clad in a floor-length, red satin Moo-Moo gown (designed by none other than Valentino himself). He and director Matt Tyrnauer were there to warm up the crowd.

The movie is delicious. You get a peek into the extravagant lives of Valentino Garavani and his lover-partner-confidant-manager, Giancarlo Giammetti, in all their big hair-ness. The film covers the final season, their 45th year in business, and the end of an era of a true couturier. It’s a world that exists with very few divas left, like Karl Lagerfeld. My favorite scene in the film is when Karl and Valentino share a private moment and Lagerfeld says, “We are the only ones that make fashion, all the others make crap”. There might be some truth to that, but what this film points out is that the real “masters of the art of fashion” is a dying breed.The other hilarious ditty is when Valentino asks Giancarlo “How do I look,” in the limo on the way to the big event and he replies dryly, “You look too tan”. The movie is great if you love seeing gowns and gays. Well, surely you can’t have one without the other.

His Pugs watch the fitting for the grand finale.

His Pugs watch the fitting for the grand finale.

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