‘Jack Taylor of Beverly Hills’ DVD review (Detroit Metrotimes)

A film about a suitmaker wouldn’t generally promise the most engaging cinema. But when a suitmaker has the irascible personality and unmatched history of Jack Taylor, one is not only engaged, but also bemoaning the end of the bespoke era which Taylor represents. Taylor has been operating a tailor’s shop in Los Angeles for the last half-century, and in that time has provided the clothing that defined the style of everyone from the Rat Pack to Jackie Gleason and Cary Grant. Despite a lifetime dealing with customers who are used to not just being right, but also having their egos indulged, Taylor — even after more than 60 years behind the counter — brooks no bullshit when it comes to fitting egos into suits. Wisely, director Cecile Leroy Beaulieu steps out of the film’s subject and history and allows the man himself to tell his story, with the backdrop of his iconic haberdashery providing a perfect setting for his reminiscing. While the tales Taylor spins out are deeply fascinating, it’s his character that makes this documentary exceptional.

First appeared May 27, 2009 in Detroit Metrotimes.

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