Becoming Karl Lagerfeld

Becoming Karl Lagerfeld
Becoming Karl Lagerfeld
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Becoming Karl Lagerfeld on Hulu is more about dazzle than depth, but the overall allure is hard to escape from. This fashion-focused series is a consumable eye candy with steamy love scenes and the core story’s dysfunctional relationship becomes even more excruciating as it goes. That’s enough drama to keep us interested for six episodes that follows Lagerfeld’s rise from being an anonymous German designer of ready-to-wear fashion in a ponytail who took on Parisian haute couture and friend-cum-rival Yves Saint Laurent in the 1970s and became an influential voice in the world of fashion.

However, if you want greater character development, this show doesn’t provide it. Perhaps it does not have to. The New Look –a fashion escapade by Apple TV+ required that depth though not so much in this series despite how well it would have been accepted. Becoming Karl Lagerfeld may fail to actually reveal much about Lagerfeld himself; what was really behind his choice of trends, however, it serves as a great method for taking viewers along an intriguing journey. Moreover, we are granted Daniel Brühl (The King’s Man) leading as Lagerfeld along with Théodore Pellerin playing Jacques de Bascher, his cherished but injured lover. Their performances might both feature among award nominees soon enough! In the meantime enjoy Bacqué Raphaëlle, Have Jennifer and Isaur Pisani-Ferry slick and sassy adaptation from their best-selling biography Kaiser Karl.

This French- German production with subtitles drags us into Paris circa 1972 when almost everything revolved around fashion. At this time he was just 38 years old while his prêt-a-porter line had not yet fully caught on with consumers. Having been influenced by his previous professional association with Yves Saint Laurent (superbly played by Arnaud Valois), a recognized designer himself but much more so than Lagerfeld, the latter is still compelled to focus.

And then there’s Jacques de Bascher. Brash and full of himself, Jacques was determined to win over Karl and claim him as his lover. And he does, but this turns out to be an unconventional affair considering how forward-thinking yet lustful Jacques really is. You see, this man has a lot of mommy issues and a weak self-image due to his tenderness phobia. Living with his mother may not help at all, since she constantly urges her son to pierce Paris fashion in order for it to be considered relevant. As Lagerford decides on challenging Yves Saint Laurent who is supported by his controlling business boyfriend Pierre Bergé (played by Alex Lutz), Jacques tags along happy go lucky – and exaggerating some parts relating to his family status – through elite socializing in Paris.

It clearly shows how different these two designers are through the fashion series itself. During that midlife crisis phase Lagerfeld is worried about not having any label or house of his own—he would later work for Chloé as its creative director before going on to Chanel. On the other hand, Saint Laurent continues riding high on success from an early age being idealistic throughout it all. Karl’s business savvy can be credited largely due to Jacque’s supportiveness but they still cannot get personal despite all of Jacque’s claims of deep love and adoration for him.

To balance the inner suffering, Jacques sleeps around, even having an affair with Laurent at some point. This would be called an open relationship today. But Lagerfeld was mad at this that his “partner” had a swell time even if Lagerfeld was not going to make out with Jacques. A complete deadlock. Resulting to this, their love becomes poisonous, while series explores the intricate metamorphosis (or degeneration) of Jacques that sometimes is the more interesting narrative.

Karl Lagerfeld was godly among men until he passed away in 2019 and left a noteworthy legacy behind him. The aim of this series is to demonstrate how Lagerfeld started down that path and how much he would give up in order to stay on it. What can’t it always elucidate clearly is why the inner motivation of Lagerfeld toward fashion was so intense or how he “saw” the world as fashion designer or enough creative drive inside that kept him going? Why did he create? Maybe it’s like him, a mystery we will never solve ? However,Jacques appears like a spirited dandy brimming over with joi de vivre.

Brühl takes the title literally, slipping into this role and fully becoming Lagerfeld’s impassable psychological barrier and manipulations of thoughts.It’s a stunning performance from beginning to end which keeps you glued Pellerin and Valois are also marvelous as Jacques and Yves respectively; two male personalities that would perhaps suit each other better in certain respects. However any long-term commitment here would have eventually made these guys self-destruct . There is something fascinating about Pellerin as an actor, too, which cannot be overlooked He certainly has an on-screen presence — check out his roles in Franklin , Beau Is Afraid , Solo . Sometime soon this gifted artiste will be giving a major award acceptance speech.

Elsewhere,Sunnyi Melles played Marlene Dietrich real great. Indeed, a real scene stealer, Melles played the divine role of Dietrich and at one juncture had a face-off with Lagerfeld about a dress he was supposed to make for her.Brilliant all around. Similarly, Dietrich would be another good series to have during this period.

Meanwhile, cinematographers Mahdi Lepar and Mélodie Preel give us wonderful sights of Paris, Monaco, Rome and other places that are amazing to look at. Stephanie Laurent Delarue, Anna Prat and Marco Bagnoli’s art direction is exceptional while Audrey Estrougo and Jérôme Salle kept it briskly paced episode after episode with fun pulse-pounding Paris pop/pre-disco soundtrack behind as story moves along. Being quick moving ,sexy but interesting; Becoming Karl Lagerfeld fits well in as well as surpasses some of its constraints.

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