Saturday, January 2, 2010


Happy New Year Everyone!!! The "00 horribles" are over (I didn't realize what a difficult decade it was until I took a good look back) and the new decade is like fresh snow before us. I am optimistic--eternally. I celebrated the New Year in the Wasatch range of the Rockies at Snowbird watching a torch light parade through the mountains, and fireworks overhead! On New Year's Day-- instead of blogging --I joined my lovely sister-in-law of the long blonde hair in baking a delicious square triple layer coconut ginger cream cake covered in toasted coconut and mounted on a white pedestal. I wish I could pass out slices to all. I love to eat. I love to bake. I have been indulging my every whim all week, and have many films to tell you about, many that I missed during the year, and watched on DVD this week, among them, the previously blogged about CORALINE--and VALENTINO!

VALENTINO is about as delectable as the aforementioned cake. It's a fever dream of a movie about the iconic Italian designer who has spun an extraordinary life out of his boyhood fascination with beautiful women on the silver screen. As an adult, Valentino found a way to live out his fantasies as well as those of fashion-minded women the globe over in the world of haute couture. We see the ravishing clothes take shape, from simple pencil sketches, to the draping of voluminous fabric over the bodies of naked real-life mannequins in his workshop; then his cadre of seamstresses takes over with pins and thread, stitching everything by hand, every sequin, every pleat, making his dreams reality. There are 45 years of glorious garments, and the camera never looks away, even when Valentino and his lifelong partner Giancarlo Giammetti bicker backstage, even when he yells at them to stop. There are impossibly beautiful models, movie stars like Gwyneth, designers like the perpetually pony-tailed Karl Lagerfeld, and fashion mavens like Anna Wintour (her documentary THE SEPTEMBER ISSUE is as pinched as she seems)who waft through the film.
But none overshadow Valentino; the vision and force of this fashion titan who is both vain, and endlessly talented, remains eternally himself on a landscape eventually co-opted by corporate bottom liners. Rent VALENTINO--and have a slice of cake as you watch. This is having your cake and eating it too.

More to come.
--stay tuned!

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