19 February 2011

Vidal Sassoon: The Movie (2011)

I've seen more than my share of Blow Out and Tabatha's Salon Makeover. Okay, fine, I've seen every episode of the first two seasons of Blow Out okay? Don't judge me. I needed to know how a salon with my name on it would fare. Plus there is no drama like hair drama. Well, at the time anyway. Now everything from that show would probably be pretty tame. We've come far in reality salon television.

I've also seen more than my fair share of instructional hair videos, for I used to date a hairdresser and she taught me all about proper technique and gave me some insight into the art of hair styling. Those scissors she used to cart around were no joke. Having revealed all this, a documentary about Vidal Sassoon was obviously a must see.

Originally, this film was commissioned to be an eightieth birthday gift for Sassoon. Then it was expanded into a movie and therein lies the problem. It feels like a birthday gift. All positive testimonials and talking heads praising the impact Vidal had on the industry. I mean, yes, he did modernize the idea of a salon, and his five point haircut is a thing of beauty, but I would have enjoyed some more technical details or a bit more historical background -- and some analysis about why his ubiquitous hair product line collapsed. Still, the story of Sassoon is a compelling one, as he rose from humble beginnings to not only become an influential artist, but possibly the fittest octogenarian ever. The man is a crazy health nut! (I think I'd recommend Valentino: The Last Emperor over this movie though.)

The woman on the movie poster is Nancy Kwan. If you don't know who that is, my friend did a short post on Hyphen about her. Speaking of that poster: great photo, horrific tagline.