Love, Cecil
color & b/w. 98+ min. Lisa Immordino Vreeland, dist. by Zeitgeist c/o Kino Lorber, www.kinolorber.com. 2018. DVD UPC 738329233549. $29.95. Closed-captioned. ART-GENERAL
Fashion and portrait photographer, prolific diarist and scrapbook keeper, stage and costume designer Cecil Beaton (1904–80), propelled by an appetite for beauty and an overwhelming "visual hunger," was determined to lead a life out of the ordinary. Narrated by actor Rupert Everett, this video biography depicts Beaton's life full of contradictions. Born into a comfortable middle-class British family, he was bored by school, only becoming interested in his university's theater club, for which he designed stage scenery. He joined a group of aesthetes who called themselves the "bright young things," but beneath the frivolous face lay a strong work ethic. Lacking money and connections, he found commissions from photo work, securing assignments from the British and American editions of Vogue. He was disgraced when he inserted anti-Semitic slurs into his magazine drawings and only rescued when the British Royal family sought photo portraits. When World War II broke out, he traveled to many theaters of operations, tirelessly taking photos to boost morale at home and to build American support for Britain's war efforts. He was celebrated for his later film sets and costume designs and his trendy portraits of icons such as Mick Jagger, Marilyn Monroe, and Twiggy.
VERDICT Friends and collaborators recall the many sides of the man and artist, his enduring legacy, and his singular pursuit of beauty. Recommended.

Be the first reader to comment.

Comment Policy:
  • Be respectful, and do not attack the author, people mentioned in the article, or other commenters. Take on the idea, not the messenger.
  • Don't use obscene, profane, or vulgar language.
  • Stay on point. Comments that stray from the topic at hand may be deleted.
  • Comments may be republished in print, online, or other forms of media.
  • If you see something objectionable, please let us know. Once a comment has been flagged, a staff member will investigate.




Kids are using VR to explore worlds and create new ones


Kids are using VR to explore worlds and create new ones


Kids are using VR to explore worlds and create new ones

Get connected. Join our global community of more than 200,000 librarians and educators.