Louis Vuitton's "L'Invitation au Voyage" Is Full Of Hot Air
I got hit this week with the perfect storm of sensory exclusion. A juicy case of pink eye had me walking into walls and left my face looking like a glazed donut. The head cold/junior-pneumonia mashup that arrived on its heels clogged my nose and ears, reduced my voice to a rasp and took down my taste buds, just because it could. Thus I arose yesterday morning to find myself blind, deaf, mute, tasteless (in most accepted senses of the word) and impervious to odor-perception. While this removed the olfactory peril from the act of changing the kid's diapers, it rendered the process of coherent-thought-formation quite challenging.
I got lucky when "L'Invitation au Voyage," the latest brand-burnishing endeavor from the well-accessorized kids at Louis Vuitton, arrived on my cyber-doorstep amid all this. Given that I'm still hopped up on the finest that Walgreen's has to offer, it's the only type of clip I'm capable of deconstructing at this moment: self-impressed, self-unaware, transparently symbolic and stuffed colon-deep with I-is-a-art-school-gradjoooit frippery. In that sense, "L'Invitation au Voyage" is the greatest gift I'll receive this Chrismuchanukwanzaa season.
Here's my very literal play-by-play. Supermodel-y gal wakes up naked save for a strategically placed throw pillow; fondles a mystery key hung around her neck bell-cow-style while getting dressed (her bed apparently makes itself, which is another one of those supermodel perks of which I'd like to avail myself); alternately pouts and preens while traversing the shadowy corridors of her hotel; heads outside and makes her way to the Louvre, occasionally breaking into the type of light trot favored by dads worried that the Dairy Queen might close two beats before they reach the door; suspects she's being followed by a dude with breathtaking cheekbones but doesn't appear outwardly distressed by the possibility; uses the reflection from the protective glass casing that entombs the Mona Lisa to check her hair; suspects the cheekbone guy again; pouts/preens again; uses the key to open a strategically placed Louis Vuitton trunk; finds an envelope in the folds of its interior lining; heads outside again; happens upon a fired-up hot-air balloon; accepts a balloon ride as Jeanny Cheekbone reveals himself on the ground below; teases opening the envelope but doesn't, even though maybe it says, "Don't go into the balloon! It's a trap!"; and floats away into a beautiful Parisian sunset, because it's not a trap.
All together now: branding! The message, as best I can interpret it, seems to be that individuals chi-chi enough to procure Louis Vuitton finery are permitted to roam the halls of the Louvre unmolested. Or maybe it's that Louis Vuitton is running a "buy a bag, get a chance encounter with a handsome benign stranger" special for the holidays. Who the hell knows anymore?
The only thing dumber than watching clips of this kind is attempting to glean some deeper meaning within them. There is none. A tip: Just show us the satchel or coin purse or burnished leather pochette and go on your merry way, okay? Extreme art direction is for extreme art films, not ploddy brand videos.
I am going to take a nap now.