John Wayne as Reuben J. “Rooster” Cogburn, tough Deputy U.S. Marshal
Fort Smith, Arkansas, into Indian Territory, Fall 1880
Film: True Grit
Release Date: June 12, 1969
Director: Henry Hathaway
Costume Designer: Dorothy Jeakins
Wardrobe: Luster Bayless (uncredited)
To commemorate John Wayne’s birthday 113 years ago today on May 26, 1907, let’s take a look at one of Duke’s most enduring roles and the one that won him the Academy Award after more than forty years making over 200 movies.
Swiftly adapted from Charles Portis’ source novel of the same name, True Grit follows 14-year-old Mattie Ross as she seeks the help of a drunken U.S. Marshal, chosen by virtue of his reputation as the meanest marshal, to avenge the murder of her father. Continue reading
Gary Cooper as Will Kane, newlywed city marshal
Hadleyville, New Mexico Territory, Summer 1873
Film: High Noon
Release Date: July 24, 1952
Director: Fred Zinnemann
Men’s Wardrobe Credit: Joe King
Born 119 years ago today on May 7, 1901, Gary Cooper received his second Academy Award for Best Actor in recognition of his now-iconic performance in High Noon as a laconic lawman whose sense of duty compels him to make a lone stand against a band of dangerous outlaws.
Ed Harris as Gene Kranz, determined, no-nonsense NASA flight director
Houston, Texas, April 1970
Film: Apollo 13
Release Date: June 30, 1995
Director: Ron Howard
Costume Designer: Rita Ryack
Okay, Houston, we’ve had a problem here…
Apollo 13 astronaut Jack Swigert first transmitted this famous (and oft-misquoted) message 50 years ago today at 3:08 AM (GMT) on Tuesday, April 14, 1970, soon repeated by the mission commander Jim Lovell: “Uh, Houston, we’ve had a problem.” (At the Apollo Mission Control Center in Houston, it was still 10:08 PM on Monday, April 13.)
The craft had launched three days prior from Kennedy Space Center, manned by Swigert, Fred Haise, and mission commander Jim Lovell. The mission was intended to be the third of the American space program that would land on the Moon until the notorious “problem”—an explosion resulting from a failed oxygen tank in the service module—forced the three-man crew and their mission controllers in Houston to improvise solutions that ultimately resulted in the three astronauts safely returning to Earth, splashing down in the South Pacific on April 17 when they were swiftly met by a U.S. Navy recovery team.
While Apollo 13 was technically unsuccessful in its initial objective of a lunar landing, the mission and its outcome have been deemed “a successful failure” due to how different individuals, teams, and departments were able to work together in as tight timeframe to solve the almost-impossible task of bringing the three astronauts home safely, requiring not only the best efforts of Lovell, Haise, and Swigert, but also ingenuity and dedication from the Mission Control team centered in Houston under the “tough and competent” leadership of flight director Gene Kranz.
James Caan as Santino “Sonny” Corleone, hot-headed mob chief
New York City, Summer 1948
Film: The Godfather
Release Date: March 15, 1972
Director: Francis Ford Coppola
Costume Designer: Anna Hill Johnstone
WARNING! Spoilers ahead!
For this midsummer #MafiaMonday, BAMF Style is taking a look at this much-requested outfit from Sonny Corleone’s street takedown of his abusive brother-in-law Carlo Rossi (Gianni Russo).
It’s a hot June day in New York City. Carlo and his cronies are all out on the street, loafing around, listening to the radio, and not expecting much from their day… until a black sedan squeals to a stop, and out charges Sonny Corleone, charging after Carlo with designs on at least ruining the latter’s orange two-tone leisure suit. Continue reading
Harrison Ford as Han Solo, swaggering space pirate and smuggler
A Long Time Ago in a Galaxy Far Far Away
Film: Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope
Release Date: May 25, 1977
Director: George Lucas
Costume Designer: John Mollo
Film: Star Wars: Episode V – The Empire Strikes Back
Release Date: May 21, 1980
Director: Irvin Kershner
Costume Designer: John Mollo
Film: Star Wars: Episode VI – Return of the Jedi
Release Date: May 25, 1983
Director: Richard Marquand
Costume Design: Aggie Guerard Rodgers & Nilo Rodis-Jamero
WARNING! Spoilers ahead!
May 4th is often celebrated by Star Wars fans so BAMF Style is taking today to honor its favorite fictional space traveler (and no, it’s not James Bond in Moonraker.)
This month marks the 39th anniversary of Star Wars‘ original release in 1977 and laid the foundation for one of the most acclaimed and popular film franchises of all time. Continue reading
Al Pacino as Carlito “Charlie” Brigante, paroled nightclub owner and former heroin dealer
New York City, September 1975
Film: Carlito’s Way
Release Date: November 3, 1993
Director: Brian De Palma
Costume Designer: Aude Bronson-Howard
WARNING! Spoilers ahead!
Ten years after the wild success of Scarface, Al Pacino strapped on a gat and stepped in front of Brian De Palma’s camera as Carlito Brigante, the character developed in Judge Edwin Torres’ 1970s crime novels Carlito’s Way and After Hours. Despite its title, Carlito’s Way is primarily based on the latter novel, depicting Carlito’s desperate attempts to “go straight” after yet another release from prison. Continue reading
Walton Goggins as Boyd Crowder, scrappy Harlan County criminal chieftain
Harlan County, Kentucky, Fall 2012
Episode: “Kin” (Episode 4.05)
Air Date: February 5, 2013
Director: Peter Werner
Costume Designer: Patia Prouty
For great fall attire, one needs look no further than Justified on FX. The show’s pragmatic anti-hero, Boyd Crowder, came a long way from being the thuggish white supremacist bank robber we met back in the pilot. By the middle of the fourth season, he’s shaping up his own criminal empire in Harlan County and enjoying a romance with his deceased older brother’s widow. (It should be noted that said widow had actually shot his older brother to death with a shotgun… Boyd is evidently the forgiving type.)
With his character transformation came a major costuming transformation. Boyd can’t be pigeon-holed into a particular stratum of the criminal underworld, and his wardrobe reflects that. He needs to look respectable enough for urban mobsters like Wynn Duffy while still keeping in touch with the good ol’ boys under his employ. The result is a mishmash of rustic formality that suits Boyd’s particular brand of dapper style. Continue reading
Steve Buscemi as Enoch “Nucky” Thompson, crooked city politician and influential mob bootlegger
Atlantic City, Memorial Day 1921
Series: Boardwalk Empire
Episode: “Gimcrack & Bunkum” (Episode 2.05)
Air Date: October 23, 2011
Director: Tim Van Patten
Costume Designer: John A. Dunn
As summer starts winding to a close, make sure you schedule some time this weekend to hit the links with your pals.
In Boardwalk Empire‘s second season, Nucky and political pals Harry Daugherty and Jess Smith blow off some steam after a Memorial Day ceremony by getting out onto the green. Things are tense for Nucky as his old protégé Jimmy Darmody is vying for power in the city, his Attorney General ally is more concerned with his weight than Nucky’s legal situation, and the unreliable Jess Smith is trying to use Nucky for a shady partnership. And that’s all just before they leave the clubhouse.
Nucky Thompson: Do you actually enjoy golfing?
Harry Daugherty: I enjoy being a man with the time to play it.
Maybe golf isn’t so relaxing after all. Continue reading
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
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 Boulevard, Stalag 17, Sabrina, The 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
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
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