Sequins, colorful prints, mirrored walls, silk scarves and lacquered surfaces… this could be keywords for the “Radiant garden” collection, but it’s the visual description of our movie of the month: Velvet Goldmine (1998)- Originally titled “Glitter kids” and with main characters loosely based on David Bowie, including his Ziggy Stardust phase, Iggy Pop and Lou Reed. We follow the story of a British journalist that in 1984 investigates whatever happened to Brian Slade, a 70´s rock star who faked his own death on stage, had his hoax revealed and later disappeared from the public eye.
Like a glam rock version of Citizen Kane, director Todd Haynes constructs a non-linear narrative depicting a revolutionary time for music using fantasy and an amazing soundtrack (Brian Eno’s “Baby’s on fire” deserves a special mention) to talk about rather relevant and universal themes like coming of age, sexuality, freedom and self-expression. The stellar cast is also a high point led by Christian Bale, Ewan McGregor and Jonathan Rhys Meyers.
More than its brilliant aesthetic, the way the story is told in dreamlike sequences, like a giant web of references mixed up and re imagined into something unique that pays homage to this magical, subversive and wild era. The movie is a must-see for anyone who’s ever felt like an outsider and found in art an inspiration to express their own identity and inner desires.
We leave you with the film’s opening title card, a message that strongly resonates with us: “Although what you are about to see is a work of fiction, it should nevertheless be played at maximum volume”.