Cara Delevigne, Pharrell Williams: Lagerfeld's Latest Fantasy
NEWS: The new Chanel film 2014 is sublime and ridiculous, just as it should be.
Short film Reincarnation was imagined into being by Karl Lagerfeld; the fashion house’s 80 year old Creative Director, in conjunction with Chanel’s annual Métiers d'Art show - a Ready-to-Wear collection outside of the official schedule.
In true Lagerfeldian style, Reincarnation is sublime and utterly ridiculous: we’d expect nothing less from the man who, turning four, asked his mother for a valet.
By day, the newly brunette Delevigne is wenchy-chic barmaid; Williams a dapper lift operator. Just before midnight, however, the pair are transformed into ball-bound Austrian nobles. And what finery! Suddenly a mermaid, trapped in a meringue Delevigne becomes Sissi, wife of Emperor Franz Joseph I, Empress of Austria and Queen of Hungary. The beautiful, mad Bavarian was known for her impossibly slender waist, floor-length hair and had mystical cult of beauty.
Pharrell, meanwhile, becomes a dashing Salzbergian gent in military garb. They take each other's hands, some oddly stilted ball-dancing ensues, then some awkward hip hop shuffling. Oh, and Cara and Pharrell duet, debuting their first single, CC The World; a peculiar creature, complete with someone's warbling soprano, sweeping strings and an irritating "Sissi""/"CC" refrain.
Yes, it’s absurd, and the press release is comical ("It’s made in an artisan way, in the very best sense of that word, because in artisan there is "art"). But is there anything wrong with a good old fashioned piece of escapism? We can snigger all we want, but this is fashion, not politics.
When we asked a Chanel insider about Lagerfeld’s approach, she told us: "There is no message. Karl wanted to create something provocative and special, but he knows about clothes, he doesn’t know about real life. He just wants to make people dream."