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The Guccis Are Really Not Happy About ‘House of Gucci’

  • November 30, 2021

By most accounts, Aldo and even Paolo, not simply Maurizio and Rodolfo, were magnetic figures whose carriage reflected the soignée substance of what they were selling — and, indeed, helped sell it.

In a recent review of the film for Air Mail, Tom Ford, who had a front-row seat to the whole story (though not the precise one depicted in the film), wrote: “In real life, none of it was camp. It was at times absurd, but ultimately it was tragic.” The lack of nuance in the movie made him, he wrote, “deeply sad.” In a phone call, Domenico De Sole said much the same.

In their statement the family said it reserves the right to “protect its name, image, and dignity,” which sounds like yet another Gucci case might be the offing. But Patricia Gucci (who is currently embroiled in a different lawsuit, in which one of her daughters is suing her ex-husband for childhood sexual abuse, and she is named as a co-defendant) said there are no such plans; they are leaving it to the court of public opinion for now.

Will it make a difference? It’s easy to dismiss the complaints as the whining of sore losers who are obsessed with image over all. But it’s exactly that image that formed a totem of identity that is part of the story of how we got to here: how so-called craft became a value unto itself and fashion vaulted from being a bunch of small family-run businesses into a global part of pop culture.

And that in turn is part of what made the movie itself worth making, because that’s why a corporate and family crisis exploded into closets around the world. It’s part of why, since the film’s release, searches for Gucci products have gone into the stratosphere; according to the global fashion marketplace, up 257 percent for Gucci bags alone.

To miss that seems not so much like creating art and more like fake news. And in that case, no one really wins.

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