Layer Cake

Daniel Craig in Layer Cake.

Daniel Craig in Layer Cake (2004).

Seeing as the stoner holiday of 4/20 is coming up this weekend, it’s only appropriate that BAMF Style profiles a cinematic drug dealer. However, the classy “businessman” of Layer Cake is hardly the traditional dealer…

Vitals

Daniel Craig as an unnamed London drug dealer

London, Summer 2004

Film: Layer Cake
Release Date: October 1, 2004
Director: Matthew Vaughn
Costume Designer: Stephanie Collie

Background

Layer Cake could almost be called Daniel Craig’s test drive as Bond. While more timid than the infamous spy (“I hate guns! Although that one is very pretty…”), he plays a cunning, manipulative, and cheeky anti-hero with a conflicting but specific set of morals. He also has a pretty sharp wardrobe without resorting to Bond’s dinner jacket and martini trope. Also, much like Bond, he gets to enjoy a steamy mid-day hotel room tryst with a femme fatale, until he is rudely interrupted of course.

However, there is one major difference glaring between Daniel Craig in Layer Cake and Daniel Craig as Bond. In Layer Cake, he plays a criminal. A drug dealer, to be exact. Now, he is a drug dealer with morals, but still, I think we can all agree that drug dealing is a profession Bond would look down upon. Although, as Dan himself tells us in the film’s narration…

I’m not a gangster, just a businessman. And my commodity happens to be cocaine.

Since we are never told his actual name in the film – the credits even just call him XXXX – I will refer to him as simply Dan.

What’d He Wear?

Dan’s standard look in Layer Cake is a light gray T-shirt and jeans with a jacket. There are others, which will be covered in later posts, but this is his staple. Dan’s attire, in fact, is very remnant of the later character and BAMF Style favorite Hank Moody with his solid, neutrally-colored T-shirts, dark jeans, brown Chelsea boots, and dark jackets.

In every scene not requiring a suit, Dan sports a pair of well-fitting standard medium-dark wash blue denim jeans, worn with a dark brown leather belt. The jeans may be Levi’s, as indicated by the small but distinctive red tag on the inner edge of the right rear pocket. The “rounded-V” rear pocket seams also look like those typically found on Levi’s jeans.

The center photo is probably up for a Most Awkward Angle on BAMF Style award.

The center photo is probably up for a Most Awkward Angle on BAMF Style award.

The wide dark brown leather belt fastens in the front through a large silver buckle. The belt has three rows of holes, extending around the entire belt.

Dan’s footwear of choice throughout is a pair of dark brown leather Chelsea boots with brown elastic sides and black soles. Reportedly, the particular boots in the film are R.M. Williams “Henley” style chestnut-colored boots. It looks like he usually wears these with black socks.

Dan sports a pair of what are likely R.M. Williams boots.

Dan sports a pair of what are likely R.M. Williams boots. Spot a young Tom Hardy in the center photo.

Dan almost always wears a light gray short-sleeve T-shirt, much as he later will in Casino Royale. The raglan-sleeve shirt is looser than a normal T-shirt and has very small piping on the neck and arm holes.

2013-01-13 10.10.15 pm t shirt

However, for one scene where Dan and his crew (which includes a young Tom Hardy) go to meet with fellow drug dealers in a motel, he swaps the gray for a solid black short-sleeve T-shirt. This black shirt seems to be more like a standard T-shirt than the gray, with no shoulder yokes and typical neck and arm hole piping.

Note George Harris next to Dan as Morty, a fellow badass who gets a Crowning Moment of Awesome when he stomps the shit out of an old crony.

Note George Harris next to Dan as Morty, a fellow badass who gets a Crowning Moment of BAMFery when he stomps the shit out of an old crony.

When we first see Dan in the film, he is sporting a simple black knee-length raincoat. The single-breasted coat has a standard safari-jacket-style collar and fastens with four buttons down the front. There is an slash pocket on each side, button-tab cuffs, and a black lining. We don’t see much of the rear, but it appears to have a single vent.

A wise purchase for anyone living in London. (Or Seattle, but that's besides the point)

A wise purchase for anyone living in London. (Or Seattle, but that’s besides the point)

The most common jacket seen, however is a very cool leather jacket that Daniel Craig also appears to own in real life. It is a soft leather jacket in very dark espresso brown with large shirt-style turndown collars and a silver zip-fastening front with a faceted obelisk zipper pull. The thin and light “chili red” polished suede lining can be seen when the jacket is worn open, extending all around the inside to the very edges of the zipper.

There are no yoke panels, but a horizontal seam across each side of the chest and down the inside of each arm. A vertical seam runs down the center of the back. The cuffs are plain with no buttons, snaps, or zips. The only outer pockets are the slash pockets on each side in the front. The waist-length coat is slim cut with a good drape, fitting Dan’s athletic build well.

Dan has been spotted out wearing the exact same jacket. Not sure what came first, but it's definitely a great jacket.

Dan has been spotted out wearing the exact same jacket. Not sure what came first, but it’s definitely a great jacket.

I have heard several arguments for the coat being Armani, Belstaff, or Schott UK. However, Omar, a very helpful commenter on this blog, has the same jacket and indicated that it is actually made by Dunhill, with the Dunhill logo visible on the inside of the jacket during the hotel scene. Omar also helpfully provided some details of the jacket, including clearing up for me the fact that it is a very dark brown rather than black. The brown makes more sense, complementing the brown boots and belt worn by Craig’s character.

The same jacket is also owned by Dougray Scott, worn by Scott in a Mercedes-Benz ad a few years ago. Omar, who also pointed out the Scott connection, mentioned that American versions of this Dunhill jacket use leather-tabbed double zippers.

Finally, when Dan goes looking for the daughter of his boss’s friend (or is it?), he wears his usual gray T-shirt and jeans with a dark navy pinstripe sport coat (or orphaned suit jacket). The jackethas notch lapels and a 2-button, single-breasted front. Additional details include deep double rear vents and flapped, straight hip pockets. No breast pocket. He later wears the same jacket with a white shirt.

If you're all disappointed that you didn't get to see more of this blazer, don't fret, there will be an ENTIRE POST dedicated later to the blazers Dan wears in this film. Yes, I have a lot of free time.

If you’re all disappointed that you didn’t get to see more of this jacket, don’t fret, there will be an ENTIRE POST dedicated later to the jackets that Dan wears in this film. Yes, I have a lot of free time.

Dan keeps the accessories to a minimum, wearing only a stainless wristwatch – possibly a Rolex Datejust – with a black dial, which he slips into his jeans pocket when working hands-on with his merchandise.

Any idea what sort of watch he's sporting? As this is pre-Bond, I think we can rule out Omega.

Any idea what sort of watch he’s sporting? As this is pre-Bond, I think we can rule out Omega.

He also briefly wears a pair of black plastic wraparound sunglasses with dark lenses. I can’t tell what they are, but they appear to be Persol.

Christ, he's a BAMF.

Christ, he’s a BAMF.

We don’t see much of his underwear, but a bit of light blue material pokes up from time to time in the right spots, lending credence to the thought that his boxers may be light blue. Again, we’re stretching into some very intense and unnecessary detail here, but some people are crazy about how they replicate a look, so I figured they needed to have this sort of information.

What to Imbibe

Although not a drug user despite his trade, Dan certainly imbibes plenty of booze throughout the film. We see him down an entire bottle of Macallan, a few more glasses of whisky, and a couple of glasses of Irish whisky – Locke’s 8-Year-Old Single Irish Malt and Tyrconnell Single Irish Malt. Like any good whisky drinker should – especially when the booze in question is top-notch stuff – Dan drinks it neat.

Layer Cake: The Destruction of Daniel Craig's Liver.

Layer Cake: The Destruction of Daniel Craig’s Liver.

He also mixes himself a Vodka Tonic using Schweppe’s tonic in his hotel room, likely to settle his nerves before his big date with the lingerie-clad Sienna Miller.

Oh, and he also drinks a Foster’s.

Australian for BEER.

Australian for BEER.

In case you’re curious, the phone he uses to arrange all of his dirty deals is a Nokia.

How to Get the Look

2013-01-13 11.21.56 pm belt and under crop2Dan pulls off some very standard looks in Layer Cake, but a lot of what makes it standard out comes from the fit and the confidence. Dan wears clothes that fit him well, and thus he is confident that they look good. Try and do the same.

  • Dunhill dark espresso brown leather zip-up waist-length jacket with shirt-style collar, slanted hand pockets, and dark red lining
  • Light gray cotton T-shirt with small banded piping and short raglan sleeves
  • Levi’s medium-dark blue denim jeans
  • Dark brown wide leather belt with a silver buckle and three rows of holes
  • Dark brown leather R.M. Williams “Henley” slip-on Chelsea boots with brown elastic side gussets
  • Black socks
  • Light blue boxer shorts
  • Rolex DateJust wristwatch with a round stainless case and black dial
  • Black plastic Persol wraparound sunglasses with dark lenses

This is just Dan’s base look. He also switches it up with the black raincoat, dark navy pinstripe suit jacket, and a black short-sleeve T-shirt.

The Gun

To the best of my – and IMFDB’s – expansive knowledge, Layer Cake is the only major film to date to feature the Chinese Type 67 silenced pistol. And feature it it does, playing a pivotal role throughout in the hands of most major cast members.

Without saying much more, let’s talk a little more about the distinctive pistol that Dan keeps under his pillow…

Which, by the way, is a terrible place to keep a gun.

Which, by the way, is a terrible place to keep a gun.

First, to backtrack, the Chinese developed the Type 64 in the mid-1960s (uh, probably around 1964) as a special purpose silenced weapon for military and police operations. As opposed to many silenced weapons in movies – where we get the dramatic scene of the hitman screwing on the suppressor before going in for a kill – the Type 64 had an integral sound suppressor, meaning it was part of the gun itself. The integral suppressor was, in fact, a thin steel case with steel mesh and several baffles that slow down and cool the expanding muzzle blast.

A few years later – oh, let’s say it was 1967, the Type 67 was developed to replace the Type 64 in service. Like the Type 64, the Type 67 was a single-action, blowback-operated, integrally-suppressed semi-automatic pistol with a slide lock mechanism. It even held and fired nine rounds of the same 7.65×17 mm cartridge, a slow but silent round developed specifically for the Type 64. They were even the same size, around 222-226 mm long with a 95 mm long barrel. So what’s the difference?

At 1.05 kg, the Type 67 was 2/3 the weight of the 1.8 kg Type 64. Eventually the even smaller (500 g) Type 77 pistol would be developed, using the same round.

“Wow, that sounds like a distinctive pistol,” you might say. The film lampshades this, with Dan’s sloppy use of it leading to another character finding out about Dan’s nefarious secret. My guess is there aren’t too many silenced Chinese Type 67 pistols in Great Britain, especially around 2004.

(Much credit goes to Modern Firearms, one of the few sites with plenty of good information about the Type 64 and Type 67, as well as plenty of other guns!)

Dan also briefly uses a Luger P08 Artillery, although he just handles it and lets a badass Colm Meaney disassemble and reassemble it while drunk on some Irish single malt whisky.

Wonder why they thought he'd make a good Bond. Hm.

Wonder why they thought he’d make a good Bond. Hm.

Do Yourself a Favor and…

Buy the movie.

The Quote

My favorite exchange happens when Dan (“XXXX”) gets a call from Dragan, a sadistic Serbian gangster who put the evil eye on him. XXXX, having just stolen his buddy Gene’s pistol, is feeling more empowered than usual…

XXXX: (into phone) Dragan?
Dragan: (through phone) Yes?
XXXX: I’ve got an idea… Why don’t you come ’round for breakfast? I’ll squeeze some orange juice and grind some coffee and we can talk about this like adults. How’s that sound?
Dragan: Sounds very hospitable.
XXXX: Do you know where I live?
Dragan: No.
XXXX: Well, fuck off then. (hangs up)

11 comments

  1. teeritz

    I agree that “Layer Cake” was pretty much Daniel Craig’s resume as far as getting the Bond role was concerned. As for his watch, methinks it’s a Rolex Datejust, based on the bracelet link design, the hint of a date bubble on the crystal, and the fact that Daniel Craig, despite being an Omega Ambassador these days, also owns a nice collection of vintage Rolex as well. I’ve been collecting watches for the last fifteen years and I also worked at a wristwatch boutique for twelve years, so I’m always checking out who-wears- what on-screen. Another great post, sir!

    Like

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  5. Pingback: R.M. Williams Chelsea Boots | Iconic Alternatives
  6. Pingback: R.M. Williams Chelsea Boots - Iconic Alternatives

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