Tagged: Chicago

Paul Newman’s Black Tie in The Sting

Paul Newman as Henry Gondorff in The Sting (1973).

Paul Newman as Henry Gondorff in The Sting (1973).

Vitals

Paul Newman as Henry Gondorff, Chicago con artist posing as a betting parlor operator

Chicago, September 1936

Film: The Sting
Release Date: December 25, 1973
Director: George Roy Hill
Costume Designer: Edith Head

Background

It’s been almost a year since I’ve covered the classy Henry Gondorff, played by Paul Newman in 1973’s The Sting, so what would be more appropriate for New Year’s Eve than to break down Gondorff in black tie. Continue reading

Robert Redford’s Gray Suit in The Sting

Robert Redford as Johnny Hooker in The Sting.

Robert Redford as Johnny Hooker in The Sting (1973).

Yesterday was the 77th birthday of BAMF Style favorite Robert Redford. With a resume including the Sundance Kid, Jay Gatsby, Three Days of the Condor, Havana, and – of course – The Sting, Redford provides plenty of material for sartorial BAMFery.

Vitals

Robert Redford as Johnny Hooker, small-time Depression-era grifter

Chicago, September 1936

Film: The Sting
Release Date: December 25, 1973
Director: George Roy Hill
Costume Designer: Edith Head

Background

The Sting has always been one of my favorite films and was one of the first to convince me to wear suits more often. Continue reading

Warren Oates as Dillinger: The Man in Black

Warren Oates as John Dillinger in 1973's Dillinger.

Warren Oates as John Dillinger in 1973’s Dillinger.

Vitals

Warren Oates as John Dillinger, Depression-era bank robber

Tucson, Arizona to Crown Point, Indiana, Winter 1934

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

Background

“Hey wait, Nick, didn’t you already do a post on Dillinger’s prison suit?” ask many of my astute followers who also happen to know my first name.

While many folks of this generation were introduced to John Dillinger and his band of Depression-era desperadoes through the 2009 film Public Enemies, it was probably the tenth (at least) major production featuring Dillinger as a character. My personal favorite is the 1973 John Milius gunfest Dillinger featuring manly and scraggle-toothed actor Warren Oates in the title role.

As usual for Milius, the film doesn’t hold back in terms of violence, upping the Dillinger gang’s body count from around a dozen to more than fifty. Oates plays Dillinger as an cheeky outlaw who loves being just that – not a misunderstood farm boy who was led into a life of crime by police.

Yesterday marked the 79th anniversary of Dillinger’s legendary “wooden gun” breakout from the Lake County jail in Crown Point, Indiana. While Public Enemies had Dillinger already in prison garb by this time, Dillinger kept him in his black suit worn when he was arrested. Continue reading

Paul Newman’s Brown Glen Plaid Suit in The Sting

January 26 would have been the 88th birthday of award-winning actor, director, race car driver, salad dressing mogul, and all-around great guy Paul Newman. To pay tribute to one of the greatest American entertainers, BAMF Style presents Newman from one of his greatest scenes ever in one of the greatest movies ever.

Paul Newman as Henry Gondorff in The Sting.

Paul Newman as Henry Gondorff in The Sting (1973).

Vitals

Paul Newman as Henry Gondorff, alias “Shaw”, ex-grifter getting back into the “big con”

Chicago, September 1936

Film: The Sting
Release Date: December 25, 1973
Director: George Roy Hill
Costume Designer: Edith Head

Background

The Sting, directed by George Roy Hill, has long been one of my favorite films and likely began my interest in the sartorial arts, as discussed in an earlier post focusing on Robert Redford’s character, Johnny Hooker. The characters run the gamut of 1930s fashion, from skid row to black tie, assisted with the expert eye and hands of costumer Edith Head, who won an Academy Award for her work on the film.

This sequence contains one of my favorite scenes in movie history, greatly due to Newman’s performance as con man Henry Gondorff showing up “drunk” at a poker game where he meets and subsequently out-cheats his mark. Continue reading

The Sting – Hooker’s Brown Striped Suit

Robert Redford as Johnny Hooker in The Sting.

Robert Redford as Johnny Hooker in The Sting (1973).

Vitals

Robert Redford as Johnny Hooker, small-time Depression-era grifter

Joliet to Chicago, September 1936

Film: The Sting
Release Date: December 25, 1973
Director: George Roy Hill
Costume Designer: Edith Head

Background

Four years after their successful pairing in Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, Paul Newman and Robert Redford met up once again for The Sting, a 1973 crime-comedy about two con men (“grifters”, in the film’s and Jim Thompson’s parlance) who team up to take down a brutal syndicate big shot against the backdrop of the corruption of 1930s Chicago.

But before all of that, Redford finds himself flush with money after conning a mob numbers runner. He struts into a store armed with his $4,000 and leaves with a bold pinstripe suit. Continue reading

Jimmy Darmody’s Blue Checked Suit

Michael Pitt as Jimmy Darmody in the seventh episode of Boardwalk Empire,

Michael Pitt as Jimmy Darmody in the seventh episode of Boardwalk Empire, “Home”.

Today in 1933, Prohibition officially ended in the United States with the ratification of the 21st amendment. To celebrate this momentous and wonderful occasion, we look again at Boardwalk Empire.

Vitals

Michael Pitt as Jimmy Darmody, rising bootlegger looking to be more than “half a gangster”

Chicago and Atlantic City, February through November 1920

Series: Boardwalk Empire
Creator: Terence Winter
Costume Designer: John A. Dunn

Background

Jimmy Darmody, a young protagonist of Boardwalk Empire, is presented as an early protege and eventual foil of Enoch “Nucky” Thompson, the Atlantic City treasurer. Although Thompson is clearly based on Enoch “Nucky” Johnson, the real life boss of Atlantic City during the Prohibition era, Darmody was invented for the show and, due to an excellent performance by Michael Pitt and brilliant storytelling from the show’s writers, helps to bring an interesting era in American history to life through the eyes of a relatable, yet troubled, character. Continue reading

North by Northwest

Cary Grant as Roger O. Thornhill in North by Northwest (1959).

Cary Grant as Roger O. Thornhill in North by Northwest (1959).

Vitals

Cary Grant as Roger O. Thornhill, Madison Avenue ad man mistaken for an international spy

New York City, Fall 1958

Film: North by Northwest
Release Date: July 28, 1959
Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Tailor: Arthur Lyons of Kilgour, French & Stanbury
Wardrobe Credit: Harry Kress

Background

North by Northwest is famous for being one of the best thrillers and espionage films of all time, but it has also received plenty of accolades as the greatest “suit movie” due to the sharply-tailored gray-blue Glen plaid suit that Cary Grant wears throughout the film. In August 2015, Esquire gave it the top spot on its Greatest Suits in Film list… which also included several other heroes you’ll see on the pages of BAMF Style.

The suit even inspired a short story from writer Todd McEwen, retelling North by Northwest from the perspective of Grant’s tailored suit and shining a light on just how important costuming was to the film. The story is naturally titled “Cary Grant’s Suit”.
Continue reading