Tagged: Double-Barreled Shotgun

The Yakuza: Robert Mitchum’s Tan Parka and Turtleneck

Robert Mitchum as Harry Kilmer in The Yakuza (1974)

Robert Mitchum as Harry Kilmer in The Yakuza (1974)

Vitals

Robert Mitchum as Harry Kilmer, tough former detective

Tokyo, Spring 1974

Film: The Yakuza
Release Date: December 28, 1974
Director: Sydney Pollack
Costume Designer: Dorothy Jeakins

WARNING! Spoilers ahead!

Background

The unique neo-noir Japanese gangster movie The Yakuza was conceptualized by brothers Paul and Leonard Schrader based on Leonard’s letters to Paul while living in Japan, particularly about the yakuza and the screen presence of Ken Takakura. While Takakura was almost always guaranteed to play a role, the crucial positions of the director and the lead actor—who would portray an aging former detective sent to Japan in service to an old friend—were still in transition.

Early in the pre-production stages, it looked like Robert Aldrich would direct with Lee Marvin in the lead role, until Marvin’s clash with Warner Brothers led to Robert Mitchum taking the role. Continue reading

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Sean Connery’s Brown Corduroy Jacket in The Untouchables

Sean Connery as Jim Malone in The Untouchables (1987)

Sean Connery as Jim Malone in The Untouchables (1987)

Vitals

Sean Connery as Jim Malone, tough and honest Chicago beat cop

Chicago, September 1930

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

WARNING! Spoilers ahead!

Background

The Untouchables is a highly entertaining – yet highly fictionalized – saga of the successful legal campaign to bring down Al Capone’s criminal enterprise that terrorized Chicago through the 1920s with an all-star cast including Robert De Niro as Capone himself.

Eliot Ness had made a name for himself in the final years of Chicago’s beer wars as a relentless Prohibition agent, and he would use his fame decades later to pen The Untouchables, a memoir in which he credits himself with practically single-handedly sending Capone to prison. In real life, Ness’ raids were indeed disruptive, but it was the work of modest investigators U.S. Attorney George E.Q. Johnson and IRS agent Frank Wilson that eventually led to the charges that successfully convicted Capone. Continue reading

Gene Hackman’s Tweed Suit as Buck Barrow

Gene Hackman and Estelle Parsons as Buck and Blanche Barrow in Bonnie and Clyde (1967).

Gene Hackman and Estelle Parsons as Buck and Blanche Barrow in Bonnie and Clyde (1967).

Vitals

Gene Hackman as “Buck” Barrow, bank robber, ex-convict, and family man

Texas, May 1933

Film: Bonnie & Clyde
Release Date: August 13, 1967
Director: Arthur Penn
Costume Designer: Theadora Van Runkle

Background

Happy birthday to Gene Hackman, who turns 86 years old today!

Bonnie and Clyde marked the first major role for Hackman, who had spent much of the ’60s as a struggling actor who shared rooms with fellow struggling actors Dustin Hoffman and Robert Duvall. 1967 turned out to be a banner year for the friends and roommates, earning Hackman and Hoffman their first Academy Award nominations.

Hackman brings an easygoing charm to the role of the more famous Clyde’s older brother Buck, and the film gets many of the “on paper” details right about Buck. As Clyde’s older brother, he had more experience tangling with the law and spent the first few months of Clyde’s criminal career in the Texas state prison. He had escaped once, but – as Hackman tells Warren Beatty’s Clyde – it was his new wife Blanche that talked him into returning to prison to serve out the rest of his sentence, and he would be pardoned 15 months later. Buck and Blanche journeyed to visit Bonnie and Clyde, ostensibly for a reunion and possibly for Buck to try and talk Clyde into following his good example. Of course, the murder of two Joplin policemen during this reunion meant Buck would be wanted again as well, and the brothers led the motley “Barrow Gang” in a string of small-town stickups and kidnappings over the next three months. Continue reading

Joe Kidd’s Tweed Suit

Clint Eastwood as Joe Kidd in Joe Kidd (1972).

Clint Eastwood as Joe Kidd in Joe Kidd (1972).

Vitals

Clint Eastwood as Joe Kidd, laconic hunter and former bounty hunter

New Mexico, Spring 1902

Film: Joe Kidd
Release Date: July 14, 1972
Director: John Sturges

Background

Penned by Elmore Leonard, Joe Kidd is a unique revisionist Western starring Clint Eastwood as the titular ex-bounty hunter who finds himself reluctantly hired to join a posse tracking down a group of Mexican revolutionaries fighting for land reform.

Although the Joe Kidd character could be interchanged with any of Eastwood’s usual taciturn and iron-willed Western heroes (not that he’s any less entertaining for it!), the movie benefits from its interesting and oft-ignored setting and context as well as the usual Elmore Leonard touch of an array of unique characters populating the film’s world.

At the outset, Joe is locked up in the small town of Sinola, New Mexico as he awaits his trial for poaching. When he is asked if he knew it was illegal to hunt on reservation land, Joe responds:

Well the deer didn’t know where he was, and I wasn’t sure either.

What’d He Wear?

Audiences had become well-acquainted with the sight of Clint Eastwood’s familiar “Man With No Name” guise in Westerns, so it must have caught many audiences off-guard when Joe Kidd is first introduced in a suit – albeit, a raggedly worn one after his night in the slammer. Continue reading

Buck Barrow’s Leather Flight Jacket

Gene Hackman as Buck Barrow in Bonnie and Clyde (1967).

Gene Hackman as Buck Barrow in Bonnie and Clyde (1967).

Vitals

Gene Hackman as “Buck” Barrow, Depression-era ex-convict looking to go straight

Joplin, Missouri, Spring 1933

Film: Bonnie & Clyde
Release Date: August 13, 1967
Director: Arthur Penn
Costume Designer: Theadora Van Runkle

Background

BAMF Style’s been focusing a lot on law-abiding BAMFs lately, and – while their behavior may be admirable – it’s always welcome to shift back to characters with murkier legal histories. 1967’s Bonnie and Clyde is stylish in many regards, including the rugged outlaw style sported by Clyde’s older brother Buck, played charmingly by Gene Hackman in his first major on-screen role. Continue reading

Michael Caine in Get Carter

Michael Caine as Jack Carter in Get Carter (1971).

Michael Caine as Jack Carter in Get Carter (1971).

Vitals

Michael Caine as Jack Carter, ruthless London gangster

Newcastle, England, Spring 1971

Film: Get Carter
Release Date: March 10, 1971
Director: Mike Hodges
Costume Designer: Evangeline Harrison

Background

Get Carter is arguably one of the greatest crime films of all time, making it – by my default – one of the greatest films of all time. Bleak, gritty, and violent, and, the film was the love child of director Mike Hodges and superstar Michael Caine with a screenplay written by Hodges from Ted Lewis’ 1970 novel Jack’s Return Home. Although Hodges had originally drafted the screenplay with Ian Hendry (who would play Eric Paice in the film) in mind for the lead role, Caine eventually took the role that cemented his place as a cinema icon. Hodges was surprised that a major star like Caine would take on the role of Jack Carter; although Caine had previously played a gangster in The Italian Job, Charlie Croker was more of a charming ne’er-do-well while Carter was a restrained but brutal and ultimately unlikable killer. Continue reading

Val Kilmer as Doc Holliday in Tombstone

Val Kilmer as

Val Kilmer as “Doc” Holliday in Tombstone.

Sorry about the length in advance, but I wasn’t totally sure how to structure this one. If there is repeated information, consider it valuable knowledge that you should never ever forget.

Vitals

Val Kilmer as John “Doc” Holliday, failed dentist, proficient gambler, and excellent gunfighter

Tombstone, AZ, October 1881

Film: Tombstone
Release Date: December 24, 1993
Director: George P. Cosmatos (but really, Kurt Russell)
Costume Designer: Joseph A. Porro

Background

Today is the 132nd anniversary of one of the most infamous shootouts in the history of the Old West, the Gunfight at the O.K. Corral! Continue reading