Tagged: Colt Detective Special

Jack Lemmon as “Bash Brannigan”

Jack Lemmon as Stanley Ford (in his "Bash Brannigan" persona) in How to Murder Your Wife (1965)

Jack Lemmon as Stanley Ford (in his “Bash Brannigan” persona) in How to Murder Your Wife (1965)

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Jack Lemmon as Stanley Ford, comic strip artist and dedicated bachelor

New York City, Summer 1964

Film: How to Murder Your Wife
Release Date: September 20, 1965
Director: Richard Quine
Wardrobe: Izzy Berne & Marie Osborne

Background

Happy birthday to Jack Lemmon, a class act and one of my all-time favorite actors.

One of the first Jack Lemmon movies I had ever seen was the problematically titled How to Murder Your Wife, a VHS tape belonging to my grandma that she had I must have watched a dozen times during my childhood. Lemmon played Stanley Ford, an artist dedicated to two things: his espionage comic strip Bash Brannigan and remaining an unattached bachelor. The latter ambition is quelled during a drunken stag party when he meets and immediately marries a beautiful blonde stripper (Virna Lisi) who, as luck would have it, doesn’t know a word of English. Continue reading

The French Connection – Popeye Doyle’s Overcoat and Gray Suit

Gene Hackman as "Popeye" Doyle in The French Connection (1971). Over his right shoulder is Eddie Egan, the real-life inspiration for the character.

Gene Hackman as “Popeye” Doyle in The French Connection (1971). Over his right shoulder is Eddie Egan, the real-life inspiration for the character.

Vitals

Gene Hackman as Jimmy “Popeye” Doyle, gruff NYPD narcotics detective

New York City, December 1970

Film: The French Connection
Release Date: October 9, 1971
Director: William Friedkin
Costume Designer: Joseph Fretwell III

Background

Happy birthday to Gene Hackman, born this day in 1930! This year’s Academy Award nominations were announced last week, so today’s post explores the birthday boy’s first Oscar-winning performance as NYPD narc “Popeye” Doyle in The French Connection.

Eddie Egan was a real detective with the NYPD who, with his partner Sonny Grosso, was instrumental in a 1961 investigation that dissolved a massive heroin ring. The case would form the basis of a 1969 non-fiction book by Robin Moore that was swiftly adapted into the fictionalized film The French Connection. Gene Hackman, who by now had two Oscar nominations to his credit, was tapped for the role of “Popeye” Doyle, the profane detective modeled after Egan, while Egan himself would serve as technical advisor and play the smaller role of Walt Simonson, Doyle’s supervisor. Continue reading

Tony Rome’s Charcoal Flannel Suit

Frank Sinatra in Tony Rome (1967)

Frank Sinatra in Tony Rome (1967)

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Frank Sinatra as Tony Rome, private investigator and compulsive gambler

Miami Beach, Spring 1967

Film: Tony Rome
Release Date: November 10, 1967
Director: Gordon Douglas
Costume Designer: Moss Mabry

Background

Over on my Instagram feed, I like to commemorate #SinatraSaturday each weekend, but today I felt Ol’ Blue Eyes deserved a dedicated post. Frank Sinatra starred as the titular character in Tony Rome, a 1967 adaptation of Marvin H. Albert’s novel Miami Mayhem. Tony Rome was Sinatra’s first cop role, playing a laidback private eye in the tradition of Humphrey Bogart who seems more interested in gambling, drinking, and skirt-chasing than actually solving a case. Continue reading

Bogart in The Big Sleep: Chalkstripe Flannel Double-Breasted Suit

Humphrey Bogart as Philip Marlowe in The Big Sleep (1946).

Humphrey Bogart as Philip Marlowe in The Big Sleep (1946).

Vitals

Humphrey Bogart as Philip Marlowe, archetypal hard-boiled private detective

Los Angeles, Fall 1945

Film: The Big Sleep
Release Date: August 23, 1946
Director: Howard Hawks
Wardrobe Credit: Leah Rhodes

WARNING! Spoilers ahead!

Background

Today is a pretty special day for me, and I’d like to celebrate the woman who is the Bacall to my Bogie by reflecting on The Big Sleep, which was originally released in theaters 70 years ago tomorrow, eight days after its premiere on August 23, 1946.

The Big Sleep was the second of four films starring Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall. The had originally met while filming her cinematic debut, To Have and Have Not, which was released on October 11, 1944, the very day after production began on The Big Sleep. (To Have and Have Not is also the first movie that my girlfriend and I watched together!) Continue reading

Bogart in The Big Sleep: Birdseye Wool Suit

Humphrey Bogart as Philip Marlowe in The Big Sleep (1946).

Humphrey Bogart as Philip Marlowe in The Big Sleep (1946).

Vitals

Humphrey Bogart as Philip Marlowe, archetypal hard-boiled private detective

Los Angeles, Fall 1945

Film: The Big Sleep
Release Date: August 23, 1946
Director: Howard Hawks
Wardrobe Credit: Leah Rhodes

WARNING! Spoilers ahead!

Background

The Big Sleep is often considered the apex of American film noir. Plot becomes secondary (and often disregarded) in favor of colorful characters made of private eyes, floozy femme fatales, and pornographers spitting snappy dialogue at each other against the backdrop of both the glamorous and seamy sides of the city. The same plot and characters from Raymond Chandler’s 1939 source novel are here, with the anti-Code elements like pornography and homosexuality all but removed. Continue reading

The French Connection – Popeye Doyle’s Light Brown Suit

Gene Hackman as "Popeye" Doyle in The French Connection (1971).

Gene Hackman as “Popeye” Doyle in The French Connection (1971).

Vitals

Gene Hackman as Jimmy “Popeye” Doyle, gruff NYPD narcotics detective

Brooklyn, December 1970

Film: The French Connection
Release Date: October 9, 1971
Director: William Friedkin
Costume Designer: Joseph Fretwell III

Background

To celebrate this weekend’s Academy Awards ceremony, BAMF Style is looking at The French Connection, which took home five Oscars in 1972 including Best Picture and – for Gene Hackman’s portrayal of unorthodox narc “Popeye” Doyle – Best Actor. It was the first R-rated movie to win the coveted Best Picture award, and its gritty realism set the tone for one of the greatest decades in American filmmaking. Continue reading

Popeye Doyle’s Peacoat and Pontiac

Gene Hackman as

Gene Hackman as “Popeye” Doyle in The French Connection (1971).

Vitals

Gene Hackman as Jimmy “Popeye” Doyle, rough but dedicated NYPD narcotics detective

Brooklyn, December 1970

Film: The French Connection
Release Date: October 9, 1971
Director: William Friedkin
Costume Designer: Joseph Fretwell III

Background

Car chases have been engrained in American cinema since the early days of the Keystone Kops. As the interest in cars grew, auto manufacturers began highlighting their most innovative products through on-screen action. The James Bond franchise innovated the use of car chases with Goldfinger‘s gadget-laden Aston Martin DB5 and a conveniently placed Ford Mustang convertible. The Mustang poked its head out again for the seminal chase in Bullitt as Steve McQueen faced off against a black ’68 Dodge Charger in his Mustang GT-390. After Bullitt, filmmakers began exploring the possibilities of cars on film. New, exciting cars were showcased like the new Dodge Challenger in Vanishing Point to the new Mustang Mach 1 in Diamonds are Forever.

For The French Connection, William Friedkin’s 1971 film based on Robin Moore’s book about intrepid NYPD cops Eddie Egan and Sonny Grosso, the car chase formula was injected with something new. Rather than the super-cool hero coolly chasing a villain in his super-cool car, the film places its ragged protagonist off-duty cop in an ordinary sedan commandeered from a civilian. Not only that, but this villain isn’t in a car; rather, he has hijacked an elevated train as Popeye is forced to race the train to each stop. Continue reading