Burt Lancaster as J.J. Hunsecker, powerful and domineering newspaper columnist
New York City, Fall 1956
Film: Sweet Smell of Success
Release Date: June 27, 1957
Director: Alexander Mackendrick
Costume Designer: Mary Grant
One of my favorite movies is Sweet Smell of Success, the atmospheric film noir starring Burt Lancaster as a Walter Winchell-like columnist and Tony Curtis as the opportunistic young PR flack desperate to get in good with him.
Ernest Lehman, who contributed to the screenplay based on his own novelette, declined to direct the film due to his fear of Lancaster, but the actor’s aggressive and volatile temperament paid off to create the needed aura of his intimidating character, the sort of man who could and would destroy an enemy’s career on a whim. Continue reading
Steve Buscemi as Enoch “Nucky” Thompson, political boss and bootlegger
Atlantic City, January 1923
Series: Boardwalk Empire
Episode: “Bone for Tuna” (Episode 3.03)
Air Date: September 30, 2012
Director: Jeremy Podeswa
Creator: Terence Winter
Costume Designer: John A. Dunn
WARNING! Spoilers ahead!
I’m taking the blogger’s imperative and dedicating this whole week to Boardwalk Empire and its celebrated throwback style.
During its five-season run, Boardwalk Empire highlighted the spectrum of Prohibition-era men’s fashion from Jimmy Darmody’s street tweeds (link) and Mickey Doyle’s comic bowler-topped sack suits to Chalky White’s natty plaid suits accented by bold bow ties and Nucky Thompson’s distinctive take on white tie (link).
As a decidedly unconservative dresser, it thus becomes very meaningful when the typically bold-suited Nucky Thompson dons traditional morning dress for a morning in church. Continue reading
Daniel Craig as James Bond, rogue British government agent
La Paz, Bolivia, August 2008
Film: Quantum of Solace
Release Date: October 31, 2008
Director: Marc Forster
Costume Designer: Louise Frogley
The last post found us sailing down to Bolivia with the Sundance Kid, so let’s hang around and see what kind of trouble James Bond gets into in the same country for the 00-7th of April.
Exactly 100 years after Butch and Sundance met their fate in San Vicente, Daniel Craig’s rogue James Bond arrived in the country with his former MI6 handler Mathis (Giancarlo Giannini), where they are immediately interrupted by the efficient Agent Fields (Gemma Arterton, who recently expressed that she wouldn’t take the role if offered it today). Continue reading
Aidan Turner as Philip Lombard, adventurer and ex-mercenary
Devon, England, August 1939
Series Title: And Then There Were None
Air Date: December 26-28, 2015
Director: Craig Viveiros
Costume Designer: Lindsay Pugh
WARNING! Spoilers ahead!
As we get closer to St. Patrick’s Day, BAMF Style is focusing on another Irishman, Aidan Turner, the Dublin-born actor who many are suggesting as a possibility for taking over the James Bond mantle as the prospects of Daniel Craig’s return seem dwindling.
Of course, an important aspect of the 007 role is how well an actor sports a dinner suit, so we’re checking out the period black tie ensemble that Turner wore as Philip Lombard in the BBC’s 2015 miniseries And Then There Were None. Continue reading
Henry Cavill as Napoleon Solo, smooth CIA operative
Berlin and Rome, Spring 1963
Film: The Man from U.N.C.L.E.
Release Date: August 2, 2015
Director: Guy Ritchie
Costume Designer: Joanna Johnston
The Man from U.N.C.L.E. is one of the more stylish films released in recent years, transporting audiences back to the oft-romanticized height of Cold War spying in mid-’60s Europe. The movie reboot serves as a prequel for the popular TV show, which starred Robert Vaughn and David McCallum as American spy Napoleon Solo and KGB operative Illya Kuryakin, respectively.
Henry Cavill’s interpretation of Solo retains much of the easygoing efficiency and sophistication originated by Vaughn in the role, and I left the theater wishing I was heading directly to the shop of Timothy Everest, who tailored Cavill’s distinctive and debonair suits for the film.
For my inaugural Solo post, in response to requests from readers Noel and Andrew, I am choosing to focus on a flashy suit that gets plenty of screen time. Continue reading
Cary Grant as Nicolò “Nickie” Ferrante, socialite playboy
Onboard the SS Constitution in the Mediterranean, December 1956
Film: An Affair to Remember
Release Date: July 2, 1957
Director: Leo McCarey
Executive Wardrobe Designer: Charles Le Maire
Valentine’s Day being on a Tuesday this year is no excuse for not pulling out the stops to impress that special someone. The romantic holiday calls for a double dose of Cary Grant, known for his debonair demeanor both on and off screen.
Following a reader request from Gleb received last October, BAMF Style is taking a look at the distinctive and sophisticated tuxedo that Grant wears while romancing Deborah Kerr aboard the SS Constitution in 1957’s An Affair to Remember. Continue reading
Jamie Foxx as Ray Charles, groundbreaking R&B musician
Indianapolis, Fall 1961
Release Date: October 29, 2004
Director: Taylor Hackford
Costume Designer: Sharen Davis
On a suggestion from a great reader of this blog, I revisited Jamie Foxx’s Academy Award-winning performance as Ray Charles in 2004’s Ray and noticed the abundance of excellent period costumes that Foxx wears as the titular virtuoso.
In addition to Foxx’s Oscar for acting, the 2005 Academy Awards also gave a well-deserved nod to costume designer Sharen Davis, who beautifully recreated the era through Ray’s natty attire both on and off the stage. One outfit that particularly stood out was the black satin-trimmed stage suit in blue flecked silk that Ray wears during a couple of early 1960s gigs across the Midwest. Continue reading