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Coco Chanel & Igor Stravinsky [DVD] (2009)

3.2 out of 5 stars 42 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Actors: Anna Mouglalis, Mads Mikkelsen, Elena Morozova, Natacha Lindinger, Grigori Manoukov
  • Directors: Jan Kounen
  • Format: PAL, Anamorphic, Widescreen, Digital Sound, Subtitled
  • Language: French
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 2.35:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: 15
  • Studio: Soda Pictures
  • DVD Release Date: 22 Nov. 2010
  • Run Time: 120 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (42 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B003YXZHBW
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 16,818 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)
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Product description

Product Description

French drama based on the love affair between fashion designer Coco Chanel and Russian composer Igor Stravinsky. When the wealthy and successful Coco Chanel (Anna Mouglalis) is introduced to avant-garde impresario Stravinsky (Mads Mikkelsen) in 1920s Paris, she is still smitten with the rich and handsome Boy Capel (Anatole Taubman), and is devastated when Boy is killed in a car accident. The attraction between Coco and Stravinsky is immediate, however, despite Coco's recent bereavement and the fact that Stravinsky is accompanied in his exile to France by his terminally-ill wife Katarina (Yelena Morozova) and four children. As the two embark on a passionate affair, a subtle power play ensues between the traditionally-minded Katarina and the ultra-modern Coco.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD
Yes yes this is really lovely to look at, which is fair enough given Chanel and her sense of style, and the fact that Stravinsky who, to be extremely generous was rather plain, is played by a gorgeous hunk of an actor. It all passes before your eyes with great solemnity and exquisite taste... and yet you're left thinking "what actually happened?" -he edits "Rite of Spring", she invents Chanel No 5 and they have sex in a rather dark and creaky but beautifully decorated house. His poor sickly wife and family are stoic because Stravinsky's a genius and there's a nice swing in the garden. And that's it.
This underplays the magnitude of Stravinsky's achievement (you just sit at the piano, have sex with a beautiful woman and get cross at dinner and -da-da! the most important music of the 20th Century!) and doesn't really give much insight into Chanel either. Passed a not unpleasant hour or so but if its art you're after buy the Stravinsky CD box set (the bargain of the century) and a small bottle of Chanel no 5 (less of a bargain but still very nice)
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I am a fan of Chanel biography - film and books. Fascinating woman. Not sure i would have liked her, but I admire much and cringe at some. This film served only to prove Coco's selfishness - which if you have read or viewed other material you will already be familiar with. It also shows her "generosity" - financially - in supporting the arts. But at what cost to others. Anyhow, enough of her character. The film did not enlighten me at all about Stravinsky. It was all rather dull. I felt pretty dis-satisfied in fact. "Coco before Chanel" - now that's a film worth watching....get that one rather than this.
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What a deeply disappointing film. Had the subject of this tedious piece been Mrs. Ainsley of Croydon, detailing her affair with Mr. Farnsworth, sub-accountant at a building society, the film could not have been of less interest. The piece is described elsewhere as "a bio-pic" but I learned absolutely nothing about the protagonists beyond what a hazy general knowledge had already taught me. Ms. Mouglalis is decorative enough, I dare say, but Mr. Mikkelsen seems to have been told by the director, "Whatever you do, don't move your face. Communicate as little inner life as possible. Don't think, just stare. " Static, repetitive scene followed scene, only coming to life when Elena Morozova as the sad and patient wife appeared. I had not thought it possible to write the great Diaghilev into a film and have his character make so little impression, or to portray the legendary premier of "Le Sacre du Printemps" so flatly. It is difficult to accept that these extraordinarily creative spirits were in actuality so dull. Can this really have been all there was to them?
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Format: Blu-ray
The highlight of Coco Chanel and Igor Stravinsky sadly comes right at the start of the film with an impressively staged reconstruction of the infamous premiere of The Rites of Spring, which quickly turned the audience of Paris’ most cultured and sophisticated into a disgusted and furiously braying mob heckling, booing and breaking into fights until the police arrived. Unfortunately it’s the only time in the movie that anyone gets passionate about anything, which is something of a liability for a love story. Anna Mouglalis’ makes no attempt to make Chanel likeable, offering instead a woman used to taking what she wants, while Mads Mikkelsen’s Stravinsky is so intensely reigned in that he looks like making love is as tortuous for him as composing. The film frames their affair at a low point for both, with Chanel hardened by the death of her previous lover and Stravinsky in exile from a newly communist Russia with his career and reputation in the doldrums, and their relationship is certainly devoid of any joy or demonstrable passion (the closest Chanel gets to the latter is when she‘s developing her signature scent). Worse, Stravinsky’s music is often robbed of its once shocking violence that caused such indignation by Gabriel Yared opting for a slower tempo for the pieces used as underscore, and at times even in the opening you find yourself wondering if the audience weren’t really more outraged by Nijinsky’s limp choreography (or the film’s best guess at it) as Stravinsky would often later assert.Read more ›
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Format: DVD
It's quite a good film. Beautiful cinematography but nothing much really happens apart from a display of lust between Coco and Igor. Even the musical score is practically stuck on one piece i.e. 'the rite of spring.' Coco and Igor are totally without emotion or morals. I give this three stars for the visual 'atmosphere' which kept me entertained.
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I purchased this DVD expecting to revel in a feast of wonderful acting and gorgeous images of fashion design and interiors. But I was so very disappointed. Clearly the lighting cameraman/director of photography decided use only available 'light' or in this case available 'dark'. The use of additional lighting is minimal to the point of absurdity. I am all for 'breaking the rules' but only if the results are excellent. In this case they most decidedly are not.

As a freelance professional photographer I enjoy rich, full colours and prefer a slightly underexposed result. I also rejoice in wonderful, masterly lighting eg Gordon Willis' work in The Godfather. But in this film so much of it is almost black to the point that it is hard to discern what is going on. As a result it is impossible to see how good the actors really are because from what little it is possible to see they are brilliant. On seeing the finished result they must have thought 'why did we bother'.

Given the superb visual style of Madame Chanel's world I expected this film to reflect that. Maybe it does but it is impossible to see it. I wonder why this DoP was selected to shoot this subject? It is unlikely that he is inept/inexperienced given that he was selected for the job. Equally it cannot be the constraints of the budget that meant that there was no money to rent the lighting equipment etc. So it can only have been blind arrogance that has given us a result we are unable to enjoy. Either way, in my view, he should have been fired on seeing the first rushes.

In short, I would not recommend anyone to buy this DVD
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