(Dir. Frédéric Tcheng) (2014)
Disclaimer: P neither knows nor cares much about the industry of haute couture but this engaging documentary was an against-the-odds, enjoyable take on a fashion scenario so familiar it is almost a cliché: new designer and effete assistant arrive to head up the major collection of an iconic Euro fashion house with no time to spare.
Much eye-rolling, hand-wringing, and undoing beading late into the night, the heroic Parisian seamstresses pulling an all nighter (from their love of the work and helped by some early morning champagne). A last moment decision by designer Raf Simons that he did not like a white coat led to his assistant spray-painting it a dark grey in the Dior garden.
All in all, slight but rewarding. The Dior house is very stylish – check out the various walls of flowers in the showing rooms – but for P, the dresses seem a cage for the stick-like ladies showing them. Contrast the elegant dresses of the Head that still haunts the house, Christian Dior, which accentuate and empower the wearers rather than imprisoning them.[Afterword: Mr Dior would be disappointed to learn that L tried to purchase his famous primer in the 2 Adelaide Dior locations, but failed due to the complete absence of any serving staff. What is the point of brand power if there is no service at point of sale?]