Monday, April 19, 2010

Coco Chanel & Igor Stravinsky

It's been a while since I feel like writing about a movie I watch but I have to share with you all about this excellent film and story that goes well beyond the regular tale about an affair between a single woman and a married man, an extraordinary musician and an extraordinary couturier, a man that's an artist and a woman that was changing the way women dressed forever. Absolutely on purpose is my last dual comparison as there is one scene that shocked me, when Stravinsky says (more or less) that he's an artist while Coco is just a shop owner. Wow! For me the moment when this scene happens is the climax to a movie that is slow paced with not much dialogue, excellent performances with expressions and body language, lots of exuberant Stravinsky music and the most spectacular sets that recreate the true (or myth?) Chanel.

Jan Koune film is absolutely mesmerizing since the very beginning that opens credits with Chanel alike designs kaleidoscope to smoothly (and symbolically) start the film with Chanel scissoring her corset, transition to a 20 minute (or so) recreation of Stravinsky's The Rite of Spring (disastrous) opening night. AWSOME!

When I saw Coco Avant Chanel I saw Tatou very alike to what Chanel looked like. Here Anna Mougalis does not look at all like Chanel but it's impressive how she IS Chanel just with attitude and body language, you have no idea of how good her performance is, truly mesmerizing. Then Mads Mikkelsen's Stravinsky says everything with very little expressions and lots of body language even when he's stiff and deadpan faced most of the time. Last but not least, Yelena Morozova's Catherine (Stravinsky's wife) also is mesmerizing as the total opposite of Coco. Truly amazing performances.

The story? Very simple. Coco undertakes Stravinsky's financial support and takes all his family to live with her at her country villa. Stravinsky works, Chanel works (in perfume Chanel No. 5). Slowly they get involved and I know you don't need much imagination to figure out what happens, but this film is not about destination is about the voyage and exploration of two early last century figures that dared to be different and be true as individuals.

If you love Stravinsky you can't miss this movie. If you love Chanel (more style than clothes) this film is a must be seen; and if you love great European cinema you have to see this movie.

Took me almost a year to be able to watch the film that premiered at 2009 Cannes -out of competition- but the wait was more than worth it as I simply love this film. I strongly recommend it to many that read this blog but please don't expect a regular romance story as is not.

Big Enjoy!!!

Watch trailer @ Movie On Companion

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