Scatter My Ashes at Bergdorf's (PG-13)

Documentary 94 May 10, 2013
By Marsha McCreadie
At last! A documentary about that underexposed group: the 1 percenters in their lair. In Scatter My Ashes at Bergdorf's, the storied store is presented in cinematic terms as ex-screenwriter Matthew Miele watches decorator David Hoey madly creating window displays of phantasmagorical "installation art" that moves. The film's climax is the famous annual holiday unveiling as the hoi polloi press their noses against the glass. Yet the long-term employees fascinate more than the clothes: They are beautiful gargoyles, true freaks of fashion. We don’t get interviews with non-celeb shoppers of the reticent monied class, but designers Manolo Blahnik, Jason Wu, Patricia Field, and others each give their rendition of "What Bergdorf's Meant to Me." Vera Wang nails it: Being obsessive is a given; the key is how you fit into the market. A one-size-fits-all documentary format includes a mini-history; apparently the founders weren't just in it for the money. Edwin Goodman was a tailor who knew how to cut and cared about quality. Yet this macchiato with 24-karat gold flecks may not be to everyone’s taste. Spending $7,000 on shoes is shrugged off, since here success is affording Bergdorf Goodman's. Without the dueling-divas drama of The September Issue, or the shiny dynamism of Diana Vreeland: The Eye Has to Travel, this doc, title taken from a remark by a wealthy European shopper and immortalized in a New Yorker cartoon, is fun and frothy, a fan's mash note.
Matthew Miele Joan Rivers, Ashley Olsen, Mary-Kate Olsen, Candice Bergen, Susan Lucci, Vera Wang, Karl Lagerfeld, Michael Kors, Isaac Mizrahi Matthew Miele eONE Films

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