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.

8 comments about "Louis Vuitton's "L'Invitation au Voyage" Is Full Of Hot Air".
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  1. Chuck Lantz from, network, December 6, 2012 at 2:55 p.m.

    I am surprised that the author doesn't realize that some strong cold medicines can cause horrific hallucinations.

  2. Chuck Lantz from, network, December 6, 2012 at 3:06 p.m.

    Me again. After watching the video, I want to offer some defense for Louis Vuitton - as if they need defending.

    The video is the culmination of a series of still-shots used by LV in magazine and online ads over the past few weeks. Great stuff, really. Maybe after the meds wear-off, you'll appreciate it more.

  3. Giles Van praagh from Progress Partners, December 6, 2012 at 3:07 p.m.

    Love the commentary in re cow bells and & Dairy Queen. Just what LV is trying to conjure up... Made me laugh.

  4. Steve Nilsen from Private, December 6, 2012 at 3:49 p.m.

    See the comments on Vimeo: people love it. I agree with author-under-the-influence and have always made my productions and commercials mean something, but this may be because I am relatively old. My 21-year old daughter would look at this and want to buy anything LV. Makes no sense to me. Non-sensical videos can be cool, even to me, such as the Absolut inexplicable robotic greyhound racing video. Weird and cool. But this - just lame....

  5. Christopher Weakley from Virgo, December 6, 2012 at 4:02 p.m.

    I'm sure they paid a lot to use the Louvre as a location, but at least they saved on talent by using robots as actors.

  6. Tim Orr from Barnett Orr Marketing Group, Inc., December 6, 2012 at 7:07 p.m.

    Variously attributed: Whistler: "The rich are very different from you and me." Wilde: "Yes, they have more money."

  7. Alison Davis from Davis & Company, December 7, 2012 at 7:59 a.m.

    Thanks for the good laugh! The only thing you missed is the fact that the heroine flies off with the love of her life—the Vuitton bag—leaving the mere man standing on the ground. I guess you don't have your priorities straight: People don't matter, only luxury goods.

    Keep taking those cold meds; they're making you funnier!

  8. Paula Lynn from Who Else Unlimited, December 7, 2012 at 6:31 p.m.

    When you are buying in a Louis store in one of the many in Paris (not to mention being sold in a host of other stores there), you are not a customer, you are a guest. Of course, Louis Vuitton is only one of the stores in the guesting categories and certainly not on the most expensive.

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