Tagged: What to Wear to the Casino

Never Say Never Again: Largo’s White Striped Dinner Jacket

Klaus Maria Brandauer as Maximillian Largo in Never Say Never Again (1983)


Klaus Maria Brandauer as Maximillian Largo, billionaire businessman and SPECTRE terrorist

Monte Carlo, Spring 1983

Film: Never Say Never Again
Release Date: October 7, 1983
Director: Irvin Kershner
Costume Designer: Charles Knode


1983 was the year of the dueling James Bonds. Roger Moore continued as the canonical 007 in Eon Productions’ Octopussy, while Bond emeritus Sean Connery surprised audiences by starring in Never Say Never Again, an “unofficial” reimagining of Thunderball released 40 years ago next month by Jack Schwartzman’s Taliafilm.

Never Say Never Again resulted from a two-decade effort by producer Kevin McClory, who had collaborated with Ian Fleming and screenwriter Jack Whittingham on an original Bond screenplay in the late 1950s. When Fleming published a novelization of their unproduced screenplay as Thunderball in 1961, McClory and Whittingham sued and settled out of court, albeit with a string of conditions that ultimately maintained Eon’s rights to the story for up to ten years after the release of their own cinematic adaptation of Thunderball, released in 1965.

By the mid-1970s when McClory announced his plans to produce his own version of the story, both Whittingham and Fleming had died, and Connery had hung up 007’s shoulder holster—presumably for good—after reluctantly returning to the iconic role in Diamonds are Forever. After more legal and production hurdles, the end result released in October 1983 was Never Say Never Again, titled in reference to Connery reprising his role after twice saying he would never play Bond again. (While Moore turned 55 during the production of Octopussy, it’s Never Say Never Again that focuses more on Bond’s advancing age… despite Connery actually being three years younger than Moore and looking considerably more fit than the last time Connery starred as the “official” Bond in Diamonds are Forever a dozen years earlier.)

Not being produced by Eon meant many signature elements were missing, like the James Bond theme, the opening gunbarrel, and a familiar cast portraying 007’s allies at MI6. However, Bond still received his briefing from M (Edward Fox), flirted with Miss Moneypenny (Pamela Salem), and received his equipment from an uncharacteristically jolly Q (Alec McCowen) before jetting off to the Bahamas to investigate a missing nuclear warhead… just as he had in Thunderball.

Never Say Never Again globe-hops with more ferocity than Thunderball, and it’s not long before Bond arrives in southern France, tracking the enigmatic billionaire Maximilian Largo (Klaus Maria Brandauer) and his girlfriend Domino Petachi (Kim Basinger). Bond literally gets his hands on Domino at a Villefranche-sur-Mer massage parlor, where he learns that Largo is hosting a charity ball that night across the border in Monte Carlo. Good thing Bond packed his tuxedo!

Largo: Do you enjoy games, Mr. Bond?
Bond: Depends with whom I’m playing.

Sean Connery, Klaus Maria Brandauer, and Kim Basinger in Never Say Never Again (1983)

If, like me, you spent much of your childhood going over to friends’ house just to watch them play video games, this scene offers the same thrills and more.

An oft-criticized scene from Never Say Never Again pits Bond against Largo during a duel for world domination… in the form of a pixilated video game that Largo invented. Titled “Domination”, the Atari-style game was clearly an attempt to make the story seem fashionable for the 1980s—though it likely seemed dated by the time its first audiences were already out of the theater. A beaming Largo explains that “unlike armchair generals, we will share the pain of our soldiers in the form of electric shocks.” Even after almost passing out from the pain, Bond keeps the game going—is it because he wants to prove a point to Largo, or does he just not want to give $58,000 to a children’s charity?

As September 12 is National Video Games Day (not to be confused with plain old “Video Games Day” observed on July 8), BAMF Style’s inaugural Never Say Never Again post will explore Largo’s creative black tie for the event. Continue reading

Wild Card: Jason Statham’s Black Leather Jacket

Jason Statham as Nick Wild in Wild Card (2015)

Jason Statham as Nick Wild in Wild Card (2015)


Jason Statham as Nick Wild, bodyguard-for-hire

Las Vegas, Christmas 2013

Film: Wild Card
Release Date: January 14, 2015
Director: Simon West
Costume Designer: Lizz Wolf

WARNING! Spoilers ahead!


Following a request I received via my Instagram account last November, today’s post explores the Jason Statham action thriller Wild Card, coincidentally released five years ago today. The movie was a remake of the 1986 movie Heat starring Burt Reynolds and adapted by William Goldman from his own novel, not to be confused with Michael Mann’s heist epic released nine years later.

Despite Wild Card‘s less than stellar reviews and box office returns, it was an interesting experience, watching a familiar and eclectic cast through a movie that took a surprisingly understated approach for an era where action movies tend to rely on excessive CGI and explosive value, weaving through various genres and plot directions with our taciturn protagonist. Continue reading

Bond’s White Dinner Jacket in Diamonds are Forever

Sean Connery and Lana Wood in the seventh James Bond film, Diamonds are Forever (1971), filmed and set in Las Vegas.

Sean Connery and Lana Wood in the seventh James Bond film, Diamonds are Forever (1971), filmed and set in Las Vegas.


Sean Connery as James Bond, British government agent

Las Vegas, Spring 1971

Film: Diamonds are Forever
Release Date: December 17, 1971
Director: Guy Hamilton
Wardrobe Master: Ray Beck
Tailor: Anthony Sinclair


It’s Friday the 13th! Considered an unlucky day by some, this summer occurrence feels like just the right time to follow James Bond as he tests his own luck in a Las Vegas casino in Diamonds are Forever, the 1971 film that convinced Sean Connery to portray the British secret agent one more time.

Luck appears to be initially on 007’s side as he wins $50,000 at craps and makes the acquaintance of the voluptuous Plenty O’Toole (Lana Wood).

Continue reading

Casino – De Niro’s Light Blue Plaid Suit

Robert De Niro as Sam "Ace" Rothstein in Casino (1995)

Robert De Niro as Sam “Ace” Rothstein in Casino (1995)


Robert De Niro as Sam “Ace” Rothstein, Vegas casino executive and mob associate

Las Vegas, Spring 1977

Film: Casino
Release Date: November 22, 1995
Director: Martin Scorsese
Costume Design: Rita Ryack & John A. Dunn


It’s been quite a while – a few weeks shy of a year, in fact – since I last explored the bold wardrobe of Robert De Niro in Casino, but the onset of warmer weather had me thinking more colorfully for this #MafiaMonday.

Continue reading

Steve Martin’s Gray Plaid Jacket in My Blue Heaven

Steve Martin as Vinnie Antonelli in My Blue Heaven (1990)

Steve Martin as Vinnie Antonelli in My Blue Heaven (1990)


Steve Martin as Vinnie Antonelli (aka Tod Wilkinson), ex-Mafia informant

Fryburg, California, November 1989 through summer 1990

Film: My Blue Heaven
Release Date: August 17, 1990
Director: Herbert Ross
Costume Designer: Joseph G. Aulisi


You know, it’s dangerous for you to be here in the frozen food section… because you could melt. all. this. stuff.

Steve Martin’s smooth-talking Vinnie Antonelli finds post-Mafia lifestyle to be more and more amenable in My Blue Heaven as he builds a suburban criminal empire and seduces a floozy in the frozen aisle of his local grocery store. Continue reading

Bond Style: Lazenby’s Black Tie and Aston Martin

George Lazenby as James Bond in On Her Majesty's Secret Service (1969)

George Lazenby as James Bond in On Her Majesty’s Secret Service (1969)


George Lazenby as James Bond, smooth British secret agent

Estoril, Portugal, September 1969

Film: On Her Majesty’s Secret Service
Release Date: December 18, 1969
Director: Peter R. Hunt
Tailor: Dimi Major
Costume Designer: Marjory Cornelius


On the 00-7th of December, this Car Week post is focused on James Bond’s sole Christmastime adventure, On Her Majesty’s Secret Service starring George Lazenby as the suave secret agent.

The film opens with a scene straight out of the source novel as a competitive Bond engages in a playful “race” against a beautiful young woman speeding toward the beach in her convertible. Continue reading

Casino – L.Q. Jones in Snakeskin and Corduroy

Today is the first day of my annual weeklong sojourn at the beach. I’m honored to present the first-ever contributor post at BAMF Style. Please enjoy the following submission by BAMF Style reader “W.T. Hatch”.

L.Q. Jones as County Commissioner Pat Webb in Casino (1995)


L.Q. Jones as Pat Webb, cowboy Clark County commissioner

Las Vegas, Spring 1977

Film: Casino
Release Date: November 22, 1995
Director: Martin Scorsese
Costume Design: Rita Ryack & John A. Dunn


I appreciate you taking the time to see a poor old civil servant.

In a rare moment of uncontrolled anger, Tangiers casino boss Sam “Ace” Rothstein (Robert De Niro) fires his slot machine manager Don Ward, accusing him of outright incompetence or collusion with a gaming scam. Don hails from an influential Las Vegas family and is the brother-in-law of powerful county commissioner Pat Webb (played by Hollywood character actor L.Q. Jones). Continue reading

Skyfall – Bond’s Dark Blue Tuxedo in Macau

Excerpt from a promotional poster for Skyfall (2012), featuring Daniel Craig as James Bond against the familiar "gunbarrel" backdrop.

Excerpt from a promotional poster for Skyfall (2012), featuring Daniel Craig as James Bond against the familiar “gunbarrel” backdrop.


Daniel Craig as James Bond, British government agent

Macau, Spring 2012

Film: Skyfall
Release Date: November 9, 2012
Director: Sam Mendes
Costume Designer: Jany Temime


Nearly forty years after his last visit in The Man with the Golden Gun, James Bond returns to Macau after discovering a casino chip on an assassin in Shanghai. Now officially back in Her Majesty’s Secret Service, Bond packs up his dinner suit, cut-throat razor, and sunglasses and heads to the film’s version of Macau. Continue reading

The Casino Royale Dinner Jacket

I’m not sure if any of you knew this, but I wouldn’t be surprised if many of you did – today is National Martini Day, celebrating the favorite drink of many from presidents and industrialists to entertainers and fictional secret agents.

Daniel Craig as James Bond in Casino Royale.

Daniel Craig as James Bond in Casino Royale (2006).

BAMF Style’s choice for today was an obvious one.


Daniel Craig as James Bond, rookie British secret agent

Montenegro, Summer 2006

Film: Casino Royale
Release Date: November 14, 2006
Director: Martin Campbell
Costume Designer: Lindy Hemming


After years of audiences used to Roger Moore and Pierce Brosnan*, some Bond fans were unsure what to expect with the new tough and gritty Bond played by Daniel Craig. While most hardcore fans – especially those of Fleming’s novels – were pleased by the return to form in 2006’s Casino Royale, some worried that the “Bourne-era” Bond would be too tough for the Bond dinner jacket.

Luckily, Casino Royale not only puts Bond in a sharp tailored dinner jacket for the second act of the film, but his formalwear actually is commented on in the film’s dialogue as Vesper tells him:

There are dinner jackets and dinner jackets. This is the latter.

Continue reading

Sinatra’s Dark Gray Ocean’s Eleven Suit

Today marks the sad anniversary of 15 years since the death of the legendary Frank Sinatra. To pay tribute to the man, here is another installment from the original Ocean’s Eleven.

Frank Sinatra as Danny Ocean in the original Ocean's Eleven.

Frank Sinatra as Danny Ocean in the original Ocean’s Eleven (1960).


Frank Sinatra as Danny Ocean, smooth-talking con man and casino heister

Las Vegas, New Year’s 1960

Film: Ocean’s Eleven
Release Date: August 10, 1960
Director: Lewis Milestone
Costume Designer: Howard Shoup
Tailor: Sy Devore


A great suit is great not just only for looking good but also for its versatility. In several key scenes in Ocean’s Eleven, Sinatra wears a sharp gray suit, the same suit seen in the iconic Rat Pack poster of all five members standing in front of a sign for the Sands in Vegas. What makes this suit diverse is that Sinatra’s character, Danny Ocean, wears it for both a night at the casino and the funeral of an old buddy.

In an interesting reversal, the original Ocean’s Eleven is actually darker than the modern remake. According to Frank Sinatra, Jr., in the DVD commentary, Danny and his men were to charter a plane, flown by one of the “eleven”, and get the stolen money out of Vegas successfully. Unfortunately, the entire group would then be killed in a plane crash.

Other than the irony, there’s not really much that is very funny about this ending. After it was decided that no one really cared for it, an alternate ending was developed. The new ending still featured death, but only one compared to eleven. This sort of black comedy was not very common in 1960, and the Rat Pack handled it perfectly. They would be the perfect guys to defy cinematic conventions and say, “Fuck it. Someone’s gotta die for this movie.”

What’d He Wear?

Sinatra wears a dark gray wool suit, tailored for him by the legendary Sy Devore. Continue reading