DOCUMENTARY / FRANCE / 2018 / 74 MINS / PG
Two decades after its filming, Olivier Meyrou’s controversial yet exquisitely drawn portrait of France’s last great fashion designer, Yves Saint Laurent, has finally seen the light of day, having previously been withheld from release by Saint Laurent’s business partner, Pierre Bergé.
Echoing its ambiguous title, Celebration goes behind-the-scenes to present both Yves the Legend and Yves the Man, as he prepares his final collection before the fashion house was sold to Gucci in 1999. Icons of the glamour industry – such as Loulou de la Falaise, Laetitia Casta (also appearing in A Faithful Man at this year’s Festival) and the many top models who have donned Saint Laurent’s gowns – show their unerring dedication to the fashion house and its namesake. And then there’s Yves himself – on the one hand, larger than life and, on the other, astonishingly reclusive, irritable and even inelegant.
Very few had the opportunity to see Celebration before its premiere at the 2018 International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam; however, filmmaker Paul Thomas Anderson is rumoured to be one of them, given the parallels in Anderson’s erotic fashion world allegory, Phantom Thread. Notably, both films beautifully emulate the artistry that each of their protagonists exert through their craft.
"It’s a priceless addition to our understanding of how Yves Saint Laurent - the man, the myth, la marque - operated: a flawed film whose mere existence makes it essential viewing. "– Hollywood Reporter
DIRECTED BY: OLIVIER MEYROU