TrustMovies, you'll already know how little interest he possesses in the subject of "fashion." That said, he did immensely enjoy the recent documentary, Diana Vreeland: The Eye Has to Travel. So despite a movie's subject, he (almost) never says no in advance. It might have been better for all concerned had he done exactly that regarding SCATTER MY ASHES AT BERGDORF'S, the new documentary about Bergdorf Goodman, the storied store considered by some to be Manhattan's finest retail establishment. The movie itself proves a non-stop love-letter to Bergdorf, celebrity, money and success -- from someone who can't write. Or, in this case, put together a coherent or even vaguely satisfying film.
Matthew Miele, shown at left, who earlier gave us another, so-far-unreleased documentary, and a couple of little-seen narratives. Here he spends the entire first third of his film repeating himself by having one after another celebrity or designer or critic or fashionista babble on and say pretty much exactly the same thing: how amazingly wonderful a place is Bergdorf Goodman and how it changed their life. Does this get tired fast? Take a guess. Here's my favorite among many nitwit lines: "Stores like this are necessary so that people will want to aspire."
Along the way you may note that Wall Street gets involved with the store eventually. Someday, I expect, after all those ashes have been scattered -- the title of the film comes from that famous New Yorker cartoon, of which one of the celebrities on hand, Susan Lucci, has evidently never heard -- we'll probably see an Occupy Bergdorf movement, too.
When the Bernie Madoff scandal hit, BG took a hit, too -- but has bounced back beautifully. Even (more probably, especially) in this current economy, the store is thriving. At film's end, we finally see those finished "windows" that the designer has been working on throughout. They're as awful as you would have imagined, in which each dress (except the one designed by the late Alexander McQueen), supposedly displayed as central to its window, gets utterly lost in the clutter.
The documentary, from eOne Entertainment and running 93 minutes, opens this Friday in New York City at the Elinor Bunin Munroe Film Center, and on Friday, May 10, in the Los Angeles area at Laemmle's Playhouse 7 and Town Center 5. Elsewhere? Most likely. Though I cannot discover any other playdates currently posted.