Tagged: What to Wear on a Road Trip

Tom Cruise in Rain Man

Tom Cruise as Charlie Babbitt in Rain Man (1988)

Tom Cruise as Charlie Babbitt in Rain Man (1988)

Vitals

Tom Cruise as Charlie Babbitt, yuppie exotic car sales executive

Across the United States, Summer 1988

Film: Rain Man
Release Date: December 16, 1988
Director: Barry Levinson
Wardrobe Credit: Bernie Pollack

WARNING! Spoilers ahead!

Background

Let’s kick off this summer’s #CarWeek! As today, July 3, is Tom Cruise’s birthday, there’s hardly a more appropriate subject than the iconic Buick Roadmaster he drives for his trip across the United States with Dustin Hoffman in Rain Man.

Cruise stars as Charlie Babbitt, an L.A. yuppie with a failing exotic car import and sales business who just had to postpone a romantic getaway with his girlfriend Susanna (Valeria Golino) to return to Cincinnati for his estranged father’s funeral. With his business in trouble, Charlie at least looks forward to the promise of a substantial inheritance until he learns that his sole endowment from the millionaire’s estate is the very 1949 Buick convertible that drove father and son apart in the first place… Continue reading

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Jack Nicholson’s Red Nylon Jacket in Five Easy Pieces

Jack Nicholson as Robert "Bobby" Dupea in Five Easy Pieces (1970)

Jack Nicholson as Robert “Bobby” Dupea in Five Easy Pieces (1970)

Vitals

Jack Nicholson as Bobby Dupea, aimless oil worker and classical piano prodigy

Bakersfield, CA, to Puget Sound, Fall to Winter 1970

Film: Five Easy Pieces
Release Date: September 12, 1970
Director: Bob Rafelson
Wardrobe Credit: Bucky Rous

WARNING! Spoilers ahead!

Background

Happy birthday, Jack Nicholson! The prolific actor was born 82 years ago today on April 22, 1937.

Five Easy Pieces remains among my favorite of Nicholson’s extensive filmography. His performance as Bobby Dupea—”a man condemned to search for the meaning of his life,” according to director Bob Rafelson—earned the actor his second of 12 Academy Award nominations.

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Mad Men, 1970 Style – On the Road with Don Draper

Jon Hamm as Don Draper on Mad Men (Episode 7.13: "The Milk and Honey Route")

Jon Hamm as Don Draper on Mad Men (Episode 7.13: “The Milk and Honey Route”)

Vitals

Jon Hamm as Don Draper, former ad man in search of himself

Oklahoma to California, Fall 1970

Series: Mad Men
Episodes:
– “The Milk and Honey Route” (Episode 7.13), dir. Matthew Weiner, aired 5/10/2015
– “Person to Person” (Episode 7.14), dir. Matthew Weiner, aired 5/17/2015
Creator: Matthew Weiner
Costume Designer: Janie Bryant

WARNING! Spoilers ahead!

Background

To honor the anniversary of Jack Kerouac’s On the Road, published today in 1957, I’m taking a look at “The Milk and Honey Route,” the penultimate episode of Mad Men in which Don Draper’s journey to find himself drives him through the heart-land of darkness.

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Robert Mitchum in Thunder Road

Robert Mitchum as Lucas Doolin in <em>Thunder Road</em> (1958), frisked next to his classic Ford.

Robert Mitchum as Lucas Doolin in Thunder Road (1958), frisked next to his classic Ford.

Vitals

Robert Mitchum as Lucas “Luke” Doolin, moonshine driver and Korean War veteran

Rillow Valley, Tennessee, Fall 1957

Film: Thunder Road
Release Date: May 10, 1958
Director: Arthur Ripley
Wardrobe Credit: Oscar Rodriguez

WARNING! Spoilers ahead!

Background

There’s a Treasury agent down the line someplace with three bumpers hangin’ on his car.

For the first Car Week post of this year, and just in time for the fourth of July, BAMF Style celebrates the all-American tradition of car-racing and its moonshine-running origins with the 1958 action film Thunder Road.

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Steve McQueen’s Carmel Cardigan, 1964

Steve McQueen at Carmel, California, photographed by William Claxton (1964).

Steve McQueen at Carmel, California, photographed by William Claxton (1964).

Vitals

Steve McQueen, iconic American actor

Fall 1964, Carmel-by-the-Sea, California

Photographs by William Claxton

Background

Happy birthday to Steve McQueen, born March 24, 1930, in Beach Grove, Indiana, then a small town of barely more than 3,500 people. By the age of eight, he had already received his first bike (well, a tricycle) and his first watch (a gold pocket watch from his uncle), two items that would become very important to his life and legacy. By the time McQueen died of cardiac arrest in November 1980, the “King of Cool” had cemented a place among the greatest American icons of screen and style through his performances in films like The Great EscapeBullitt, and The Thomas Crown Affair, and his lifelong passion for racing and rebellion.

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Dirty Mary, Crazy Larry – Larry’s Denim & ’69 Charger

Peter Fonda and Susan George on the poster for <em>Dirty Mary, Crazy Larry</em> (1974) as their '69 Charger blazes away in the background. People who have actually seen the film know how misleading this poster is, and that's all I'll say.

Peter Fonda and Susan George on the poster for Dirty Mary Crazy Larry (1974) as their ’69 Charger blazes away in the background. People who have actually seen the film know how misleading this poster is, and that’s all I’ll say.

Vitals

Peter Fonda as Larry Rayder, wannabe NASCAR driver and small-time robber

San Joaquin County, California, Fall 1973

Film: Dirty Mary Crazy Larry
Release Date: May 17, 1974
Director: John Hough
Wardrobe Mistress: Phyllis Garr

WARNING! Spoilers ahead!

Background

Unload!

Kiss off!

While few would place Dirty Mary Crazy Larry‘s script in the same echelon with Casablanca or The Godfather, there’s no doubting that it has its place among the classic European-influenced but all-American car chase flicks that kicked off with Bullitt and tapered off somewhere in the mid-’70s as more over-the-top fare like Smokey and the Bandit took over as the gearheads’ cinematic servings. It was that brief semi-decade where the sub-genre blossomed with ennui and nihilism driving the motoring protagonists of Vanishing PointTwo-Lane Blacktop, and those of its ilk.

Dirty Mary, Crazy Larry was a transition between the earlier nihilist cult films and the more marketable, humor-laced movies. Larry, Mary, and Deke aren’t necessarily driving without a defined purpose, but one could argue they were just as doomed as Kowalski when they slipped into that lime green ’69 Charger. And it is with that ’69 Charger – which BAMF Style loyalists know by now is my favorite car of all time – that I’m concluding this run of Car Week. Continue reading

Vanishing Point

Today’s post wraps up the first BAMF Style Car Week! I figure there’s no better way to end it, especially on Flag Day, than with the all-American 1970 Dodge Challenger in the archetypal “car movie”, Vanishing Point.

Barry Newman as Kowalski in Vanishing Point.

Barry Newman as Kowalski in Vanishing Point (1971).

Vitals

Barry Newman as Kowalski, car delivery driver and disgraced ex-policeman, race car driver, and Vietnam veteran

American West (Colorado to California), Summer 1971

Film: Vanishing Point
Release Date: March 13, 1971
Director: Richard C. Sarafian
Wardrobe Master: Ed Wynigear

Background

Vanishing Point is the greatest two hour car commercial ever. After I first saw it, all I could think about for months (okay, years) was how much I wanted my own white 1970 Dodge Challenger R/T with a 440 Magnum and a 4-speed Hurst pistol grip shifter.

The screenplay was written by Guillermo Cabrera Infante, a Cuban novelist who based his story off of the true life high-speed pursuit of a California teenager who refused to stop and was killed when he crashed into a roadblock. He added another layer from real life, the disgraced career of a San Diego policeman, and the foundation for Vanishing Point was set. Continue reading