So those of you who know me, will know JUST how long I’ve been waiting to see this film which was released in France earlier this year, sans subtitles. Given that my French can get me as far as ordering lunch, telling you how old I am and what school I go to, I was forced to wait for the English version “Coco before Chanel”.
Director Anne Fontaine joined the launch last night in Mayfair for the occasion and was on hand to give her insight into this project.
You would be mistaken for expecting shots of runways with archives of Chanel trotting up and down. Instead the 2hrs focused on Gabrielle ‘Coco’ Chanel’s early life, chosen by Fontaine to describe the experiences in her youth that shaped her.
Unlike other designers she was not born into a family ‘name’ and she struggled as a courtesan at night and a seamstress by day who carved her way through as a unique woman who wanted to work in a man’s world.
Coco was a melancholy character who never feared her instincts and vocalised her thoughts at the first opportunity.
She was the first androgynous woman of her day who refused to be dictated to or told how she should dress.
She was a visionary, an entrepreneur and a tough seducer to fight her way to success.
It was her sensitivity, intelligence and incredible drive that led her to her success, overcoming tragedies along the way.
She was destined to be alone and worked up until her death. The House of Chanel is as inspiring, desirable, relevant and timeless today as it was when Coco was alive.