Rated 3.0

Ian Bonhôte directs this serviceable documentary about British fashion designer Alexander McQueen, a boundary-pushing artist and provocateur who committed suicide in 2010, one day before his mother’s funeral. McQueen mostly takes a straightforward approach in documenting McQueen’s short life (he was only 40 years old when he died), using archival footage and recruiting his former friends and collaborators to paint a mostly spotless portrait of an extremely complex person. Born in London as Lee Alexander McQueen, he quickly ascended to the top of the fashion world, starting his own label in his early twenties, taking over Givenchy and gaining notoriety for his singular designs and shock-heavy theatricality. Bonhôte structures the film around a handful of keystone runway shows, including the infamous “Highland Rape” collection, while also waving away any criticism of McQueen. While entertaining enough, McQueen feels more like an attempt to protect the estate than to understand the man.