Category: Jazz Age Summer Style

Leonardo DiCaprio’s Black Tie in The Great Gatsby

Leonardo DiCaprio as Jay Gatsby in The Great Gatsby (2013)

Leonardo DiCaprio as Jay Gatsby in The Great Gatsby (2013)

Vitals

Leonardo DiCaprio as Jay Gatsby, eagerly romantic millionaire and bootlegger

Long Island, New York, Summer 1922

Film: The Great Gatsby
Release Date: May 10, 2013
Director: Baz Luhrmann
Costume Designer: Catherine Martin

Background

On the eve of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s birthday, let’s look at the most recent major adaptation of his most famous work, The Great Gatsby. Fitz’s 1925 novel had been adapted for the big screen at least four times before Baz Luhrmann directed his colorful spectacle during the past decade.

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The Great Gatsby: Three Suits in Three Adaptations

Vitals

Robert Redford in The Great Gatsby (1974), Toby Stephens in The Great Gatsby (2000), and Leonardo DiCaprio in The Great Gatsby (2013)

Robert Redford in The Great Gatsby (1974), Toby Stephens in The Great Gatsby (2000), and Leonardo DiCaprio in The Great Gatsby (2013)

Jay Gatsby, romantic millionaire and shady bootlegger

Long Island, NY, Summer 1922

Played by Robert Redford in…

Film: The Great Gatsby
Release Date: March 29, 1974
Director: Jack Clayton
Costume Designer: Theoni V. Aldredge
Clothes: Ralph Lauren

Played by Toby Stephens in…

Film: The Great Gatsby
Release Date: March 29, 2000
Director: Robert Markowitz
Costume Designer: Nicoletta Massone

and played by Leonardo DiCaprio in…

Film: The Great Gatsby
Release Date: May 10, 2013
Director: Baz Luhrmann
Costume Designer: Catherine Martin
Clothes: Brooks Brothers

Background

With its now famous tale of doomed romance, debauchery and death, and the failure of the American dream against a backdrop of riotous parties and scandalous adultery, The Great Gatsby was destined for the screen from the moment it hit shelves in the spring of 1925 at the height of what its author, F. Scott Fitzgerald, coined “the Jazz Age.” Continue reading

David Niven’s Taupe Suit in Death on the Nile

David Niven as Colonel Race in Death on the Nile (1978)

David Niven as Colonel Race in Death on the Nile (1978)

Vitals

David Niven as Colonel Johnny Race, lawyer and war veteran

Egypt, September 1937

Film: Death on the Nile
Release Date: September 29, 1978
Director: John Guillermin
Costume Designer: Anthony Powell

WARNING! Spoilers ahead!

Background

Following the grand success of 1974’s Murder on the Orient Express, one of the few adaptations of her work actually endorsed by Agatha Christie herself, producers rushed to find the next of her books to be adapted into a lavish, star-studded affair.

Death on the Nile was published in 1937, three years but ten books after Murder on the Orient Express, and included all of the necessary ingredients for success: the return of eccentric detective Hercule Poirot, an exotic location, and a glamorous victim among an international cast of characters… all of whom had the motive and means to commit the crime.

Poirot’s “boy Friday” to help him solve the case came in the form of Colonel Race, a steadfast Brit who first appeared in Christie’s earlier novel The Man in the Brown Suit. David Niven affably portrays the capable colonel with dignified charm and deadpan wit, often serving as the straightforward foil to Peter Ustinov’s more bombastic Poirot. Continue reading

Nucky Thompson’s Beige Linen Suit

Steve Buscemi as Enoch "Nucky" Thompson in "Golden Days for Boys and Girls", Episode 5.01 of Boardwalk Empire.

Steve Buscemi as Enoch “Nucky” Thompson in “Golden Days for Boys and Girls”, Episode 5.01 of Boardwalk Empire.

Vitals

Steve Buscemi as Enoch “Nucky” Thompson, bootlegger and former Atlantic City political boss

Havana, April 1931

Series: Boardwalk Empire
Episode: “Golden Days for Boys and Girls” (Episode 5.01)
Air Date: September 7, 2014
Director: Tim Van Patten
Creator: Terence Winter
Costume Designer: John A. Dunn
Tailor: Martin Greenfield

Background

To commemorate this unofficial start of summer with Memorial Day tomorrow, BAMF Style is checking in with fashion plate Nucky Thompson from Boardwalk Empire as he enjoys a warm spring evening in Havana at the start of the fifth season.

Having exiled himself to Cuba in the seven years since we last saw him, Nucky is still wheeling and dealing in the illegal liquor trade, currently working on an export deal with the good folks of Bacardi rum in the possible wake of Prohibition’s imminent end.  Continue reading

Cary Grant’s Collarless Jacket in The Philadelphia Story

Cary Grant and Katharine Hepburn as C.K. Dexter Haven and Tracy Samantha Lord, respectively, in The Philadelphia Story (1940)

Cary Grant and Katharine Hepburn as C.K. Dexter Haven and Tracy Samantha Lord, respectively, in The Philadelphia Story (1940)

Vitals

Cary Grant as C.K. Dexter Haven, cheeky socialite yacht designer

Philadelphia, summer 1940

Film: The Philadelphia Story
Release Date: December 26, 1940
Director: George Cukor

WARNING! Spoilers ahead!

Background

Many weddings are elaborate events planned out months, if not years, in advance. In The Philadelphia Story, C.K. Dexter Haven (Cary Grant) and Tracy Samantha Lord (Katharine Hepburn) have only a few minutes before taking their place [back] at the altar for a memorable wedding that results in an appropriately informal “casual Friday” post to conclude BAMF Style’s Week of Weddings. Continue reading

Redford’s White Tie in The Great Gatsby

Robert Redford as Jay Gatsby in The Great Gatsby (1974)

Robert Redford as Jay Gatsby in The Great Gatsby (1974)

Vitals

Robert Redford as Jay Gatsby, enigmatic millionaire and eager romantic

Long Island, New York, Summer 1925

Film: The Great Gatsby
Release Date: March 29, 1974
Director: Jack Clayton
Costume Designer: Theoni V. Aldredge
Clothes by: Ralph Lauren

Background

Things are looking good for Jay Gatsby by the end of this hot roaring ’20s summer. He’s reunited with his former love, Daisy Buchanan (Mia Farrow), and—for better or worse—he’s established himself as the party king of West Egg. Sure, no one knows where his curiously vast fortune came from, but as long as he keeps the champagne flowing and hot jazz booming, no one cares either. Continue reading

David Niven’s Blazer in Death on the Nile

David Niven as Colonel Race in Death on the Nile (1978).

David Niven as Colonel Race in Death on the Nile (1978).

Vitals

David Niven as Colonel Johnny Race, dignified lawyer and war veteran

Egypt, September 1937

Film: Death on the Nile
Release Date: September 29, 1978
Director: John Guillermin
Costume Designer: Anthony Powell

WARNING! Spoilers ahead!

Background

As we in the Northern Hemisphere enjoy the first full day of summer, BAMF Style is focusing on a classic warm weather look from the quintessential gentleman, David Niven. Niven’s character, Colonel Johnny Race, was written as an MI5 agent in Christie’s novels but appears here to be more of a lawyer who is tasked with a murder investigation due to his long friendship with Poirot and his dignified upper class standing.

David Niven was one of many stars featured in the trio of lavish Agatha Christie murder mystery adaptations in the ’70s and ’80s that were often studded with a cavalcade of international acting talent. 1978’s Death on the Nile alone featured Niven, Bette Davis, Mia Farrow, Angela Lansbury, and Maggie Smith plus the decade’s Shakespearean newcomers Jon Finch and Olivia Hussey as well as Jack “that’s what I call fuckin'” Warden. Peter Ustinov took over the role of the eccentric, brilliant, and pompous Hercule Poirot – a role he would play five more times – in a perfect example of marketing a famously mustached character without overdoing it.

Although the “series” was sumptuously costumed with period attire for all, Anthony Powell’s costume design talent won him both the Academy Award and the BAFTA for Death on the Nile. (It’s worth mentioning that Tony Walton’s costume design for Murder on the Orient Express had been nominated for an Academy Award and a BAFTA, and Powell’s work on Evil Under the Sun has been thrice featured on BAMF Style already.)

What’d He Wear?

Colonel Race exudes British military elegance in his double-breasted navy blazer, white trousers and shoes, and regimental striped tie. Continue reading

DiCaprio in Gatsby’s Iconic White Suit

Leonardo DiCaprio as Jay Gatsby in The Great Gatsby (2013).

Leonardo DiCaprio as Jay Gatsby in The Great Gatsby (2013).

Vitals

Leonardo DiCaprio as Jay Gatsby, eagerly romantic millionaire and bootlegger

Long Island, New York, Summer 1922

Film: The Great Gatsby
Release Date: May 10, 2013
Director: Baz Luhrmann
Costume Designer: Catherine Martin

Background

Last Tuesday, BAMF Style reflected on Californication‘s tribute to The Great Gatsby with its second season character of Lew Ashby; now, let’s focus on a more literal adaptation when Baz Luhrmann directed his lavish big-screen version a few years ago.

The turning point in the story is when the two old flames Jay Gatsby and Daisy Buchanan are finally reunited in Nick’s humble cottage. Gatsby isn’t dressed for such modest surroundings, wearing – as F. Scott Fitzgerald describes:

…Gatsby, in a white flannel suit, silver shirt, and gold-colored tie, hurried in.

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Real Men Wear Pink: DiCaprio as Gatsby

Leonardo DiCaprio as Jay Gatsby in The Great Gatsby (2013).

Leonardo DiCaprio as Jay Gatsby in The Great Gatsby (2013).

Vitals

Leonardo DiCaprio as Jay Gatsby, eagerly romantic millionaire and bootlegger

Long Island, New York, Late Summer 1922

Film: The Great Gatsby
Release Date: May 10, 2013
Director: Baz Luhrmann
Costume Designer: Catherine Martin

Background

Today marks the 90th anniversary of the original publication of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s masterpiece The Great Gatsby by Charles Scribner and Sons on April 10, 1925. Now considered to be a literary classic and a top contendor for the mythic “Great American Novel”, the story explores themes of the decadent excess, romantic idealism, and degrees of social change that defined America in the Roaring Twenties. Sadly for Fitzgerald, the novel was best appreciated in retrospect; it sold only 20,000 copies its first year, and Fitzgerald died of a heart attack in 1940 believing that his masterpiece was rejected and forgotten. At his funeral, Dorothy Parker wept and muttered “the poor son-of-a-bitch”, echoing Owl-Eyes’ epitaph for Gatsby himself. Continue reading

Patrick Redfern’s White Dinner Jacket

Two years ago, I broke down the great off-white dinner jacket worn by Sean Connery in Goldfinger. For your end-of-summer fancy soiree (which I assume you’re hosting), the white or off-white dinner jacket should always be an option.

Nicholas Clay as Patrick Redfern in Evil Under the Sun.

Nicholas Clay as Patrick Redfern in Evil Under the Sun (1982).

Vitals

Nicholas Clay as Patrick Redfern, philandering Latin teacher

A remote Mediterranean island, Summer 1937

Film: Evil Under the Sun
Release Date: March 5, 1982
Director: Guy Hamilton
Costume Designer: Anthony Powell

WARNING! Spoilers ahead!

Background

1982’s Evil Under the Sun is a lavish adaptation of Agatha Christie’s 1941 novel, jumping on the popularity of its successful predecessors Murder on the Orient Express and Death on the Nile by stacking together a star-studded cast, dressing them up in expensive period costumes, and dropping them into a murder mystery in an exotic locale. Continue reading