Advertisment
Categories: CultureFilm

Nothing Is Celebratory in the Troubling, Long-Lost Celebration

Advertisment
Advertisment

“It’s crazy an atheist could write such religious music.” So says industrialist Pierre Bergé about composer Gioachino Rossini at the end of Olivier Meyrou’s documentary Celebration, and it may be the key to everything preceding it. It also may not, since opacity is kind of the point in this look at the work behind Yves Saint Laurent’s final haute couture show in 2001. Celebration implies that Saint Laurent’s partner Bergé was the one running the show, which by all accounts is why the film has been suppressed since 2007. Beyond noting he’s the last couturier to still be running a fashion house they themselves originated, the film doesn’t give any context about Saint Laurent, but even going in cold it’s impossible not to be troubled by the fact that the man is clearly no longer all there. Rather than being an elegiac tribute, Celebration is constructed like a horror movie. Much of this comes from the warbling, often atonal electronic score by the late composer François-Eudes Chanfrault. He had primarily done horror films, most notably Alexandre Aja’s Haute Tension, and cuts to the seemingly causally-disconnected Saint Laurent in Celebration are often accompanied by spooky looping voices. Though a document of an ostensible celebration, Celebration is never celebratory, and maybe that’s the point. Sometimes it takes an atheist.

Not rated. Opens Friday at the Roxie Theater.

Advertisment
Sherilyn Connelly

Recent Posts

Photos: Dolores Street Hill Bomb

Hundreds gathered for the yearly tradition of taking on Dolores Hill.

07/11/2020

SF Weekly Podcast: Taqueria Shorts

The power of elastic — plus librarians against COVID-19, bad Boba Guys, and Fast Times.

07/11/2020

Leptitox Reviews: Does This Supplement Work? [Updated 2020]

Losing weight can be a real pain. Once you stick to a program, it can be hard to really see…

07/10/2020

‘Yours Truly’ Documents Ai Weiwei’s Alcatraz Exhibit

The exhibition resulted in 90,000 postcards to prisoners of conscience, like Chelsea Manning, John Kariakou.

07/10/2020

Bassnectar Faces Sexual Abuse Allegations

The DJ, who cut his teeth at Burning Man, faces multiple accusations from female fans.

07/10/2020

SF Rock Trio, Fast Times, Unveil Debut Single

"Tuesday Night" is a hit of taut garage pop — perfect for a night at a dive.

07/10/2020