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Film Of The Week High camp and low cunning

MARUA DUARTE recommends the stranger-than-fiction story of the rise and fall of the Gucci family’s billion-dollar fashion empire

House of Gucci (15)
Directed by Ridley Scott

TWENTY years in the making, Ridley Scott’s wonderfully captivating new film is inspired by the shocking true story of the Gucci family, and its implosion in a tale of power, greed, betrayal, murder and high-stakes fashion.

Based on Sara Gay Forden’s book The House of Gucci, it walks a fine line between outrageous camp and bitter drama as it explores the meteoric rise and show-stopping fall of a family empire.

It is driven by a compelling and virtuoso performance by Lady Gaga (who kept in character throughout the shoot — on and off set) as the super ambitious and more-Gucci-than-all-the-Guccis-put-together Patrizia Reggiani, who proves that hell hath no fury like a woman scorned when she is threatened during a divorce with the loss of her prestigious name and lifestyle.

Spanning three decades, the film begins in 1970s Milan with Regianni meeting the shy and unambitious Maurizio Gucci (a phenomenal Adam Driver), who was studying to be a lawyer.

They married and became Italy’s first celebrity power couple. Following Gucci’s father’s (Jeremy Irons) death, Reggiani propelled him to take over the company by pushing out his uncle Aldo (Al Pacino on fabulous form), who owned half, and his idiot son Paolo (an unrecognisable Jared Leto), a wannabe fashion designer with no audible talent. 

Gloriously stylish, you can forgive the star-studded cast’s fake Italian accents as they bring their A-game to this deliciously Machiavellian drama ending in — spoiler alert! — Maurizio’s shock assassination and Patrizia’s incarceration for her role in ordering the hit.

Hugely entertaining and gripping, the irony is that no member of the Gucci family is now involved in the running of the multibillion-dollar fashion empire. 

In cinemas November 26

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