Search results for: the untouchables

Steve McQueen’s Navy Uniforms in The Sand Pebbles

Steve McQueen as Jake Holman, Machinist's Mate, 1st Class, U.S. Navy, in The Sand Pebbles (1966)

Steve McQueen as Jake Holman, Machinist’s Mate, 1st Class, U.S. Navy, in The Sand Pebbles (1966)

Vitals

Steve McQueen as Jake Holman, maverick U.S. Navy Machinist’s Mate, 1st Class (MM1)

Yangtze River, China, Summer 1926 through Spring 1927

Film: The Sand Pebbles
Release Date: December 20, 1966
Director: Robert Wise
Costume Design: Wingate Jones, John Napolitano, Bobbie Read, and James W. Tyson

WARNING! Spoilers ahead!

Background

The Navy League of the United States organized the first Navy Day on October 27, 1922, to commemorate the birthday of Theodore Roosevelt who—before becoming the 26th President of the United States—had long championed the U.S. Navy and had served as Assistant Secretary of the Navy. Set four years after the establishment of Navy Day, The Sand Pebbles begins in 1926 China, “a country of factions trying to unite to become a nation… through revolution…” according to the opening text. Continue reading

Pal Joey: Sinatra’s Gray Dinner Jacket

Frank Sinatra as Joey Evans in Pal Joey (1957)

Frank Sinatra as Joey Evans in Pal Joey (1957)

Vitals

Frank Sinatra as Joey Evans, womanizing nightclub singer

San Francisco, Spring 1957

Film: Pal Joey
Release Date: October 25, 1957
Director: George Sidney
Costume Designer: Jean Louis

Background

Today marks the birth of Frank Sinatra, the Chairman of the Board himself, born on December 12, 1915, in Hoboken. This son of tenement-dwelling Italian immigrants grew to be one of the most influential, best-selling music artists in history.

Sixty years ago, Sinatra was rising as one of the biggest stars in the world when he starred as the titular Pal Joey, a performance that earned him a Golden Globe award. Originally a stage musical starring Gene Kelly as the singing and dancing anti-hero, Pal Joey was reconfigured for the screen with the character more reflective of Sinatra’s own charming yet mischievous “nice guy” persona. Continue reading

Andy Garcia in The Untouchables

Andy Garcia as George Stone in The Untouchables (1987)

Vitals

Andy Garcia as Giuseppe Petri, aka “George Stone”, honest Chicago police recruit and expert marksman

Chicago, September 1930

Film: The Untouchables
Release Date: June 3, 1987
Director: Brian De Palma
Costume Designer: Marilyn Vance

Background

A contemporary interview from People magazine at the time of The Untouchables‘ release was very flattering to Garcia:

Andy Garcia really doesn’t have much of a part in The Untouchables. His big moments come at the beginning, when he angrily jams a gun barrel into Sean Connery’s neck, and at the end, when he coolly kills one of Al Capone’s henchmen from a prone position. Of quiet demeanor, Garcia’s minor character has no love scenes and little to say. Yet Garcia’s rich portrayal of Treasury agent George Stone, the Italian-American T-man with a chip of ice on his shoulder, adds up to much more than the sum of his minutes onscreen. He’s The Untouchables‘ quicksilver gunslinger, the deadly rookie who’s a natural pistolero.

Garcia’s character, particularly his background, are a nod to the political correctness of the original 1950s TV series’ inclusion of Nick Georgiade as Agent Rico Rossi, who served primarily to show the audience that not all Italian-Americans are mafioso. Continue reading

Jimmy Darmody’s Gray Peak-Lapel Suit

Michael Pitt as Jimmy Darmody on Boardwalk Empire (Episode 2.09: "Battle of the Century").

Michael Pitt as Jimmy Darmody on Boardwalk Empire (Episode 2.09: “Battle of the Century”).

Vitals

Michael Pitt as Jimmy Darmody, troubled Atlantic City bootlegger

Atlantic City, July 1921

Series: Boardwalk Empire
Episodes:
– “Battle of the Century” (Episode 2.09, aired November 20, 2011, dir: Brad Anderson)
– “Under God’s Power She Flourishes” (Episode 2.11, aired December 4, 2011, dir: Allen Coulter)
Creator: Terence Winter
Costume Designer: John A. Dunn
Tailor: Martin Greenfield

WARNING! Spoilers ahead! Continue reading

The Untouchables: Ness’ Gray 3-Piece Suit

Kevin Costner as Eliot Ness in The Untouchables (1987).

Kevin Costner as Eliot Ness in The Untouchables (1987).

Vitals

Kevin Costner as Eliot Ness, honest and intrepid federal agent

Chicago, September 1930

Film: The Untouchables
Release Date: June 3, 1987
Director: Brian De Palma
Costume Designer: Marilyn Vance

Background

This blog has been focusing on a lot of bad guys lately, so let’s take a look at a good guy… at least according to the film about him.

Despite what Robert Stack and Kevin Costner’s portrayals may have you believe, Eliot Ness didn’t single-handedly stop Al Capone’s reign of terror over the city of Chicago. Even Ness’ own account paints himself as a crime-fighting pariah who overcame the odds with a tight-knit group of rogue lawmen and brought down a monster. Continue reading

Jimmy Darmody’s Brown Striped Suit

Michael Pitt pours some brandy as Jimmy Darmody on Boardwalk Empire. (Episode 1.12: "A Return to Normalcy)

Michael Pitt pours some brandy as Jimmy Darmody on Boardwalk Empire.
(Episode 1.12: “A Return to Normalcy)

Vitals

Michael Pitt as Jimmy Darmody, Atlantic City bootlegger and gangster

Atlantic City, Spring/Summer 1921

Series: Boardwalk Empire
Episodes:
“A Return to Normalcy” (Episode 1.12, aired December 5, 2010, dir. Tim Van Patten)
“21” (Episode 2.01, aired September 25, 2011, dir. Tim Van Patten)
“A Dangerous Maid” (Episode 2.03, aired October 9, 2011, dir. Susanna White)
“Two Boats and a Lifeguard” (Episode 2.08, aired November 13, 2011, dir. Tim Van Patten)
“Georgia Peaches” (Episode 2.10, aired November 27, 2011, dir. Jeremy Podeswa)
“To the Lost” (Episode 2.12, aired December 11, 2011, dir. Tim Van Patten)
Creator: Terence Winter
Costume Designer: John A. Dunn
Tailor: Martin Greenfield

WARNING! Spoilers ahead! Continue reading

William Holden in The Wild Bunch

William Holden as Pike Bishop in The Wild Bunch (1969).

William Holden as Pike Bishop in The Wild Bunch (1969).

Vitals

William Holden as Pike Bishop, grizzled bandit gang leader

Coahuila, Mexico, Spring 1913

Film: The Wild Bunch
Release Date: June 18, 1969
Director: Sam Peckinpah
Costume Designer: James R. Silke

Background

We’ve got to start thinking beyond our guns. Those days are closing fast.

…is what Pike Bishop wisely tells his men, an aging group of outlaws still anachronistically robbing banks and trains on horseback with a six-shooter on their hips. Pike knows the times are changing, and it doesn’t take a water-cooled machine gun or a Mexican general’s Packard to drive the point home to them.

Today would have been the 97th birthday of William Holden, who starred in classics like Sunset BoulevardStalag 17SabrinaThe Bridge on the River Kwai before taking on the role of the anachronistically self-aware Pike Bishop. Holden was one of many actors considered by Sam Peckinpah for the role; Lee Marvin had actually been cast but then turned it down to accept the higher-paying lead in Paint Your Wagon. It turned out well for Holden, who developed the character into one of the greatest movie badasses of all time… as even that sterling news source MTV agreed. Continue reading

Clyde Barrow’s Death Suit (2013 Version)

Emile Hirsch as Clyde Barrow in part two of the 2013 mini-series Bonnie & Clyde.

Emile Hirsch as Clyde Barrow in part two of the 2013 mini-series Bonnie & Clyde.

Vitals

Emile Hirsch as Clyde Barrow, bank robber with “second sight”

Rural Louisiana, May 1934

Series Title: Bonnie and Clyde
Air Date: December 8, 2013
Director: Bruce Beresford
Costume Designer: Marilyn Vance

Background

Eighty years ago today, six Southern lawmen pulled off a feat that the federal government had been failing to do for months with the first real victory in the United States’ “War on Crime”.

With the advent of the Great Depression following the stock market crash of 1929, criminals abandoned gangsterdom and bootlegging (both “Machine Gun” Kelly and “Pretty Boy” Floyd were known to be bootleggers early in their career) in favor of motorized banditry. In the spirit of the Old West, bank robbers took to cars all across the country – with a special concentration in the poorest areas of the Midwest and the South.

This crime wave did not go unnoticed by the government. Soon, names like John Dillinger, “Baby Face” Nelson, and Alvin Karpis were dominating the headlines, and they were surprisingly welcome by the people who were sick and tired of the perceived “fat cats” in the government. Some of the criminals, Dillinger and Floyd especially, even had the begrudging respect of some small-town lawmen. But the greatest disparity between public opinion and actual temperament is with the case of Bonnie and Clyde. Continue reading

Warren Oates’s Dark Brown Suit as Dillinger

Warren Oates as master bank robber John Dillinger in 1973's Dillinger.

Warren Oates as master bank robber John Dillinger in 1973’s Dillinger.

Vitals

Warren Oates as John Dillinger, Depression-era bank robber and “super gang” leader

Mason City, Iowa to Manitowish, Wisconsin – Spring 1934

Film: Dillinger
Release Date: July 20, 1973
Director: John Milius
Costume Designer: James M. George

Background

By March 1934, John Dillinger had well-established himself as a national criminal hero. He made a mockery of both hated bankers and inept police and, best of all, he kept getting away with it. Sure, he wasn’t the only beloved “Public Enemy” in the national scene, but “Baby Face” Nelson was too violent, Bonnie and Clyde were too incompetent, and no one had heard from “Pretty Boy” Floyd in almost a year. Continue reading

Samuel L. Jackson in Pulp Fiction

Samuel L. Jackson as Jules in Pulp Fiction.

Samuel L. Jackson as Jules in Pulp Fiction (1994).

Vitals

Samuel L. Jackson as Jules Winnfield, newly enlightened mob hitman

Los Angeles, Summer 1992

Film: Pulp Fiction
Release Date: October 14, 1994
Director: Quentin Tarantino
Costume Designer: Betsy Heimann

Background

Written especially for him, the part of Jules Winnfield catapulted Samuel L. Jackson to enormous (and well-deserved) fame despite Pulp Fiction being his thirtieth film in twenty years of acting. Thanks to both Jackson’s performance and Tarantino’s script, Jules became an immediate sensation with an arsenal of brilliant lines and memorable scenes. Continue reading