‘House of Gucci’— Gaga And Driver Shine in Ridley Scott’s Latest Stylish Romp: Review

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With a narrative of lust, fashion and greed, House of Gucci hits the nail on the head in perfectly illustrating the 80’s glamour of Gucci and establishing the fascinating story behind the iconic fashion house. This murderous Gucci romance is an Italian shakespearean-esque tragedy fit for modern audiences to enjoy.

Mere months after his last film, Ridley Scott is back once again with an all-star cast in ‘House of Gucci’— a story of greed, lust and how the iconic fashion house became a brand worth killing for.

★★★★

The palpable air of not only 80’s Italian glamour, but also the eternal glamour of the titular luxury fashion house is felt all throughout House of Gucci. Director Ridley Scott successfully coordinates every aspect of the film, from his casting, direction decisions, and music choices to create a cohesive and discernible energy that exudes 80’s Gucci and allows the viewer to feel present in the time capsule he has created. Scott successfully depicts the tale of how Gucci became a brand to kill for.

The first moments of the film depict the final ones of Maurizio Gucci’s (played by Adam Driver) life, who was murdered by his ex wife, Patrizia Reggiani (played by Lady Gaga) in 1995. We are then taken back to Milan where we witness the development of Patrizia and Maurizio’s relationship, one destined for eventual demise. In the beginning their relationship is happy, two young individuals who are seemingly unmarred by the greed and gluttony of the world they inhabit.

As the story progresses, the dynamics of the two characters, their partnership and their relationship to the Gucci family evolve and become challenged as they tussle for more control of the fashion house. Subsequently, we see the turbulent relationship of Patrizia and Maurizio develop from a loving married couple into two individuals filled with resentment. The audience receives a front-row seat to the demise of their relationship in both of their individual pursuit of the absolute power of Gucci, and the greed and gluttony that comes with it.

Although Scott has an impressive all-star cast, no single character hogs the screen. Gaga and Driver deliver the story of Maurizio and Patrizia in a manner that humanises both characters. Through their depiction of the two, we see a relatable and believable timeline of a couple who were young and deeply enamoured with one another before becoming vengeful and greedy. Patrizia initially comes across as excitable and vivacious in contrast with later where we see her as crazed and vindictive.

The same can be said for Maurizio. Driver subtly illustrates changes in Maurizio’s character throughout the film. Initially, he’s not interested in fashion or the family business, preferring to identify with his maternal German side and wanting to carve out his own path. Subsequently, we see him as a character filled from head to toe with greed, prepared to throw his family under the bus if necessary, just to gain more control of the all-consuming beast that is Gucci. Even though both Driver and Gaga successfully cultivate their characters and their journey from lovers to greed stricken individuals well, it does feel like a plot line we have often seen before, and done slightly better (current TV sensation Succession certainly comes to mind).


The audience receives a front-row seat to the demise of their relationship in both of their individual pursuit of the absolute power of Gucci, and the greed and gluttony that comes with it.


However, the performances that set House of Gucci slightly apart from the classic greedy, rich and manipulative family story are the father-son duo Aldo Gucci (Al Pacino) and Paulo Gucci (Jared Leto). Jared Leto is unrecognisable as Paulo. Leto goes all out with this performance, verging on making Paolo seem almost cartoonish, but you cannot help but feel an electric thrill every-time the character is onscreen because without him, the film would feel flat at times. Both Al Pacino and Jared Leto illustrate the flaws and positives of this father-son relationship well. With Paulo’s stupidity often taking centre stage, Al Pacino coincides with this performance well, depicting Aldo’s frustrations at his son but overall, conveying his enduring, paternal love despite everything his son has done.

The film is definitely controversial, especially in its unique depiction of Patrizia Reggiani. Although the film does lean into the stereotypical rich greedy family plotline occasionally, the flamboyant performances of Jared Leto and Al Pacino, alongside Scott’s meticulous direction, leads to a unique 80’s Italian glamour feel that makes House of Gucci become a unique, entertaining thriller that’s worth the watch.

Verdict

With a narrative of lust, fashion and greed, House of Gucci hits the nail on the head in perfectly illustrating the 80’s glamour of Gucci and establishing the fascinating story behind the iconic fashion house. This murderous Gucci romance is an Italian shakespearean-esque tragedy fit for modern audiences to enjoy.

Words by Shannon McGuigan


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