House of Gucci
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House of Gucci (2021)

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When Patrizia Reggiani, an outsider from humble beginnings, marries into the Gucci family, her unbridled ambition begins to unravel the family legacy and triggers a reckless spiral of betrayal, decadence, revenge, and ultimately…murder.


Who better than an Italian, Stefani Germanotta, aka Lady Gaga, to play Patrizia Reggiani, the enticing, social climbing, determined daughter of a small transportation company family in quest of a wealthy husband.

Although there have been numerous critics here of her acting and of her accent–which is absolutely perfect, coming from this Italian reviewer–Miss Gaga’s casting was genius on the part of Ridley Scott and his creative team. An Oscar nomination is likely.

Much of the film was shot in Italy in the middle of the Covid lockdowns. Having just returned from Milan, I was thrilled to see a small portion of the magnificent Cathedral utilized for Patrizia and Maurizio’s wedding, along with the equally beautiful adjacent shopping and dining arcade in the Piazza del Duomo.

While the film’s length is a major problem–judicious editing was definitely in order–much what is on screen is stunning to the eye…the Italian exteriors, the Manhattan exteriors, and the beautiful people that inhabit the world of design and fashion.

Jeremy Irons plays the aristocratic Rodolfo Gucci flawlessly, Al Pacino does his usual Al Pacino as Rodolfo’s brother Aldo, the controlling half of the Gucci family business. Adam Driver, who doesn’t look very Italian, grows into the part of the heir apparent after Rudolfo’s death.

The big surprise is the totally unrecognizable Jared Leto as Paolo, the son of Pacino’s Aldo. Viewed as a loser, he is at times both funny and sad, and ultimately a broken shell of a man. Also somewhat in disguise was Salma Hayek as a television fortune teller who Patrizia grows increasingly dependent upon for marriage advice.

I did not find this film to be a comedy in any sense of the word. True there were funny lines and comical scenes, but in reality, House of Gucci was a tragedy. The end of a family dynasty, the corporate takeover and the resulting mass marketing of the major fashion and jewelry names.