Vidal Sassoon is more than just a hairdresser—he's a rock star, an artist, a craftsman who "changed the world with a pair of scissors." With the geometric, Bauhaus-inspired hairdos he pioneered in the 1960s and his "wash and wear" philosophy that liberated generations of women from the tyranny of the salon, Sassoon revolutionized the art of hairstyling and left an indelible mark on popular culture. This fun, fast-paced documentary traces with visual gusto the life of a self-made man whose passion and perseverance took him from a Jewish orphanage in London to the absolute pinnacle of his craft.
First-time director Craig Teper's reaction to Sassoon's rag-to-riches tale is obviously a euphoric one, resulting in a stylish film that makes appropriate use of Sassoon's wide-ranging influences: Images of hairstyles glide at us, sculpted around animated rulers, protractors, and compasses, folded in with photos of the mod midcentury architecture of Mies van der Rohe and Frank Llyod Wright. Teper swerves from black and white to color, vintage footage to modern-day conversations with family and colleagues and, of course, plenty of heartfelt reminiscences with the charismatic, 81-year-old master himself.