So far in the films I have seen for the Oscars both the fabulous Tick, Tick … Boom! and now Ridley Scott’s The House of Gucci have been terribly over looked. The House of Gucci illustrates the backstabbing, betrayal, greed, and murder on the table inside the Gucci household. The only Oscar nod for this film is for Makeup and Hairstyling, there should have been one for Lady Gaga over Nicole Kidman’s portrayal of Lucille Ball in in Being the Ricardos.
Based on the book by Sara Gay Forden, a fierce Lady Gaga leads as Patrizia Reggiani, who meets and marries Maurizio Gucci (Adam Driver). As she Patrizia talks Maurizio out of his law school, she finds her way into the family business and turns her husband against every member of the family. The performances and the life style is gaudy, the spite rampant and the bad-blood gets worse throughout the three decades across Rome, Milan, New York and the Swiss Alps.
At first the couple are rejected by Maurizio’s class driven father Rodolfo (Jeremy Irons), who sees the true character of Patrizia and knows class matters. When Maurizio’s Uncle Aldo (Al Pacino) embraces the couple, partly due to his dysfunctional son Paolo (Jared Leto) the fun begins. Paulo is an not so smart incompetent businessman, a wannabe aspiring fashion designer with little taste and even less talent. The trouble also begins as Patrizia who is smart and ambitious, wants more as she sees behind the fraud and betrayal.
Salma Hayek plays the psychic Pina, who fuels Patrizia’s ambitions and advises her throughout. As Patrizia starts to lose her grip on Maurizio and become increasingly distraught and hysterical Pina helps bring about the climax. Hayek’s performance is wonderfully layered.
As the story moves on we meet the designers of the time, a preppy Ralph Lauren, Versace, and Reeve Carney channeling Tom Ford.
In the end Gucci’s flailing image, greed, refusing to change in the ‘70s had them being bought out and taken over. In a way the death was the final piece of a demented puzzle.