By Liz Lopez
Directed by Ridley Scott, House of Gucci is a very entertaining (albeit very long) story about the Gucci empire and the family drama full of greed, backstabbing – oh and I cannot forget to mention murder. Scott works from a script by Becky Johnston and Roberto Bentivegna, based on Sara Gay Forden’s 2001 book “The House of Gucci: A Sensational Story of Murder, Madness, Glamour, and Greed.” The true-life story behind “House of Gucci” begins in the late 1970s Italy when Patrizia Reggiani (Lady Gaga), daughter to a gentleman who owns a trucking company in Milan, is invited to attend a high – end party at a mansion where she hardly knows anyone. She has a chance encounter with Maurizio Gucci (Adam Driver, nerdy looking in oversize glasses), a law student who has no interest in the family business. He is naïve, doesn’t pick up on her clues she is interested and leaves the party, but she finds a way to “run into him” and pursue spending more time with him. Yep, you guessed it – she got her man (and ultimately the luxurious lifestyle), but not until his father Rodolfo (Jeremy Irons) is no longer opposed to their marriage followed by a granddaughter. Power, money, and greed can make people change and although you may be into all of it at one time, this film shows us how decisions are made in both family and business to keep you in or out. When Patrizia is no longer in Mauricio’s favor, she doesn’t take it well and she won’t allow another to keep her man. As Gaga portrays Patrizia, she wanted Mauricio, fell in love with him and stayed with him even during the unwealthy time and into the better days. To some individuals this may sound too much like soap opera material, but people love to know about another human’s drama, especially when it becomes very cut -throat and has scandalous behavior. Gaga is the glue that holds this film together from beginning to end – well over two hours!
The viewers should be aware that this is an Italian story cast with many American actors trying their best to keep their Italian accents throughout their performance, but that may make some viewers cringe when it is not continuous.
In “House of Gucci,” Mauricio’s father, Rodolfo (Irons) is co-owner of the Gucci brand with his brother Aldo (Al Pacino) and he has a son, Paolo (an unrecognizable Jared Leto), who really is an “idiot” as his own father describes him. Aldo hosts his 70th birthday party, invites Mauricio and Patrizia and she connects with his uncle who in turn lavishes them with gifts, trips and more. The elder actors are good in their respective roles, but it is Leto who is amazing as the family loser with a limited future in design. When Patrizia’s schemes don’t go as planned, she consults with the local television psychic, Pina (portrayed authentically by Salma Hayek), leading to more blunders, Mauricio changing and leaving her. The pair of ladies end up as partners in crime. This is war and it is lethal. It is long, but worth watching.
Crew: Camera: Dariusz Wolski. Editor: Claire Simpson. Music: Harry-Gregson Williams.
MPAA Rating: R. Running time: 2 hours and 37 minutes. Opens in theaters November 24th.