Available from May 14 on Netflix, “Halston” traces the meteoric rise and dramatic fall of American fashion figure Roy Halston Frowick. In the title role, an inhabited Ewan McGregor.
What is it about ?
The miniseries follows the legendary fashion designer as he creates a global fashion empire inspired by one name: his middle name, synonymous with luxury, gender, status and fame, defining the era in which he lives, the New York of the 1970s and 1980s. But a hostile takeover soon forces him to fight for control of his most precious possession … the name Halston itself.
Halston, a series written by Ryan Murphy, Ian Brennan, Sharr White and directed by Daniel Minahan.
Available on Netflix
Who is it with?
The great creator comes back to life thanks to Ewan McGregor. AT the screen, the Scottish actor disappears behind his role. He is supported by an excellent cast made up of Bill Pullman, in the skin of businessman David Mahoney; of the French Rebecca Dayan who plays the jeweler and faithful friend of Halston, Elsa Peretti; by Gian Franco Rodriguez, who plays Victor Hugo, the designer’s companion; by Rory Culkin as director Joel Schumacher; of David Pittu who plays collaborator Joe Eula and of Krysta Rodriguez, sensational in a Liza Minnelli larger than life. Vera Farmiga also makes a small appearance in episode 3. She plays Adèle, a famous perfume designer.
What is it worth?
If the name Halston doesn’t ring a bell, that’s okay. In France, the designer has not had the same success as his rival, Calvin Klein. However, at States–United, it is the equivalent of an Yves Saint Laurent. As early as the 1970s, he established himself as a benchmark in the ruthless fashion industry. First requested by the stars, from Liza Minnelli to Elizabeth Taylor, he then built an empire by declining his brand in the manufacture of perfumes, luggage and even umbrellas. Above all, he made luxury clothing accessible for low income.
Composed of 5 episodes, this biopic makes it possible to make known or rediscover the incredible fate of this man from the American middle class. The involvement of Ryan murphy in such a project does not surprise. Halston is a romantic character, as liked by the famous producer, who co-wrote the miniseries. Artist with disproportionate ideas, arrogant, temperamental, but above all determined and talented, the couturier embodies the perfect hero to illustrate the glamor and the dark side of glory.
The series works and the talent ofEwan McGregor has a lot to do with it. The star slips into the designer’s shoes with ease. He modifies his voice, his gait, his bearing, even reproduces his gestures, until he disappears behind the features of his character. Krysta Rodriguez is also brilliant in Liza Minnelli. Her resemblance to the Hollywood legend is such that it is easy to forget the actress and believe this story. The flashy world around them, that of chic neighborhoods punctuated by evenings at Studio 54, is just as impressive.
The highly elegant photography highlights the many sets that reproduce in detail the real places Halston frequented, from his office perched atop the Olympic Tower to his house designed by architect Paul Rudolph. It is also fun to verify this precision for yourself by going to search the Web at the end of each episode.
You don’t have to be a fashion buff to be interested in this mini-series. On the contrary, it is through his critical eye on the ferocious appetite of businessmen and the future of an artist who sees himself dispossessed of his work that the biopic becomes even more fascinating. It also emphasizes his addictions and allows us to learn more about important events, such as the Battle of Versailles, which opposed French and American designers in a unique parade in 1973. Bitter, but still captivating, reinterpretation of the dream American, Halston is a success.