PRADA Presents @ A Therapy By Roman Polanski

PRADA presented a short film entitled <A Therapy> by Roman Polanski and starring Ben Kingsley and Helena Bonham Carter and it was presented during the Cannes Film Festival recently. There is a reading by film critic Stefano Francia di Celle, it is a boîte à joujoux: We are in the world of an intellectual: an opulent room, which, as suggested by the views from New York windows, seems to be in the same building as Carnage (2011), which, in its own way, reminds us of Dakota Palace in Rosemary’s Baby (1968), and thereby provokes reflections on the relationships among human beings in today’s society. Dean Tavoularis, Oscar winner and Polanski collaborator in The Ninth Gate (1999), built the set inside the Pathé Studios in Paris, where the characters of Carnage came to life: a boîte à joujoux where we are invited to admire and watch the moves and actions of two typically Polanskian figures who seem to hover, in spirit if not in letter, between puppets, physical phenomena, and pure thought.
In the apartment we see many objects and elements: the products of mankind throughout millennia of evolution. The fur coat, especially requested by Polanski for the short film and created by Miuccia Prada in a unique edition lilac colour to increase the exclusivity and uniqueness of the situation, completes and shifts the overall picture. Other Prada creations pop up from time to time on the screen. The coat is an idol that seems to draw our attention to different historical periods; capable of linking in a single stroke thoughts, passions, and different opinions. It prompts a sudden and rather abrupt change, a sort of anthropological short‐circuit that transforms the doctor’s room‐mausoleum into a lively play between the theatre of the absurd and cabaret.
This allows the man behind the doctor to come to the surface, and reveals aspects of him held secret behind a (thin) veneer of respectability and professionalism; a veneer embodied in his professional role as a scientist, his social position, his system of opinions and his money. A frivolous act and the pleasure of wearing such a precious and stunningly beautiful object put him in contrast with a wall of conventions, rigidities and fictions around which contemporary society marks boundaries and organizes its hierarchies. 
The fur represents the agreement that supports the relationship between the director and the fashion designer. Polanski is able to display a world which seems more authentic than the real one, thus interpreting and criticizing contemporary society. Prada creates original and non predefined roles for her work and produces a new language that filters into the recesses of traditional culture and leverages the potential of the new media. She is not afraid to produce what could be interpreted as a parody of the celebration of luxury, stigmatizing the world’s elite, the main target of her products. It is clear that the relationship between artist and patron have struck a new key: their respective paths cross in a common place where freedom is a primary value that benefits unrestrained creativity at high levels.
The music, written by Alexandre Desplat (an important part of Polanski’s team since The Ghost Writer [2010]), skillfully unmasks the essence of the situation, rising and developing in intensity as the doctor’s gaze is drawn to the fur coat. The whole scene is marked by a backward camera movement that, together with Kingsley’s irresistible expressive capacity, channels the whole energy towards the final twist. Skillfully dosed brushstrokes of cinema with a breadth of classicism obtain a harmonic result in a flash, uncovering an entire cosmos and the presences living in it.
“A game, a thought, that through friendship and mutual respect has become true. When I was asked to shoot a short movie for Prada, I did not think that I could really be myself, but the reality is that in the total freedom I was given, I had the opportunity to reunite my favorite group of people on set and just have fun. The chance to dwell on what the fashion world represents nowadays and the fact that it is accompanied by so many stereotypes is fascinating and at the same time a bit upsetting, but you definitely can not ignore it. It’s very refreshing to know that there are still places open to irony and wit and, for sure, Prada is one of them.” Roman Polanski added.

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