"Coco Before Chanel" on DVD 

Director Anne Fontaine's sumptuous period film drew me in, despite its deliberate pacing. "Deliberate," in case you don't know, is reviewer-speak for "poky." The subtitled French production, set in the early 1900's, follows fashion legend Coco Chanel (Audrey Tautou) through her early days, when she became the mistress of Etienne Balsan (Benoit Poelvoorde) and moved to his country estate. Balsan is an odd bird, and trying to figure what makes him tick is fun. Watching Tautou's naunced portrayal is even more satisfying. She takes Chanel from a young woman just looking for something better to a determined, well-defined individual with grace and style. 105 minutes. DVD INFO: Includes a commentary track, plus features about the real Coco Chanel.

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