June 16, 2010
by Ariel Adams
It is entirely possible that my warped mind sees watches differently than other people do. Over the course of my writing about Bertolucci watches, they have always looked interesting, but a bit strange to me. I finally connected a few of the things that some of their common Chronograph models remind of me. Maybe you agree? You can tell that these watches are all part of the same family. Some or all are Bertoluccia Giro (All-Black Giro see here), and some are just called Bertolucci Quartz Chronograph watches. No matter the name, they each have large, gaping mouths. Why? I couldn’t tell you. Though here are some of the possible design influences. My favorite is near the bottom of course. Each is highly disturbing in its own way. Bertolucci might need to occasionally revise their “Mediterranean Inspiration” slogan… to something else.
I like Bertolucci watches mostly, they are nicely made and designed. Often with quartz movements, but good lookers for the fashion crowd. Though these watches are a bit to ‘mouthy’ for my taste. What they have done is create a looped bridge over the dial and separated the sapphire crystal into two pieces. Hard to do that and get good watch resistance still – expensive as well. Bertolucci feels that their Giro line (which includes most of these watches) is “casual chic.” Perhaps it is more “gaping maw chic?”
Each watch is in a 42 mm wide steel case, except for the 18k rose gold model below. There are a number of models in the collection, including a two-tone version. Actually, there are versions with the mouth, but without a chronograph complication. Those predictably look a bit less weird. Dark dial, or light dial, Bertolucci has you covered. Even if you want a little diamond action sprinkled in. While these are technically men’s models, I would say that the design on some of the diamond versions looks unisex as best – watches like this would fare well on feminine wrists.
While most of the models have Swiss Ronda 5020.B quartz movements, the gold model here (also available in steel) have Swiss ETA Valjoux 7753 automatic movements in them. You can see that the layout of the dials differs a bit on those. Case shape is quite elegant, and so is the metal bracelet. While the watches have alligator strap options, Bertolucci did such a nice job with the gapless link metal bracelets (complete with fancy alternating polished on the links). There is a curvy, almost organic feel to the bracelet that I quite like – almost the opposite of the angular style of the iconic Rolex Submariner bracelet.
And there again there is that mouth. Large, and gaping. Not hungry, just expectant. I look inside – often to just the find date? I really wanted something more special in there. The rest of the watch dials are rich with textured and decoration. Bertolucci seems to find it a cardinal sin to have boring looking dials. You’ll mostly find shapely Arabic numerals, polished applied hour indicators, and dials with all manner of patterning due the visage of a luxury item. Seriously, once you go fancy looking watch dial, it is hard to go back to something flat and printed.
I really loved making these visual comparisons – it brought me lots of joy. People at Bertolucci are gonna be irritated a bit I am sure (but those with good humor will enjoy it, and I hope you do t00). I am upset that you really don’t see Bertolucci watches in the US anymore. Why, cause we make fun of stuff? It is a brand I would like to see come back in the states. We will see how this whole “economy” thing pans out over the next few years.[phpbay]bertolucci, num, “14324”, “”[/phpbay]