"Valentino the Last Emperor" is a fascinating documentary about the end of the fashion design industry as we know it. For 45 years, Valentino built up a brand name, yet the artist knew nothing about business and he relied upon his longtime companion, Giancarlo Giammetti to sort out his financial affairs. Corporations took control of the "Valentino" name and the famed fashion designer was put on contract.
"Valentino the Last Emperor" is a no nonsense documentary, it lacks frentic energy features so predominatly in films like "The Eyes of Laura Mars" and Robert Altman's "Prêt-à-Porter: Ready to Wear." Instead director Matt Tyrnauer shot an unfussy documentary about a fussy man. Tyrnauer is not infatuated by the glamor of the red carpets and model's runway. By ignoring the obvious, Tyrnauer created a beautiful documentary that best reveals the final days of a fashion emeperor.