Monday, December 20, 2010
The Virgin Suicides (1999)
Fashion on Film
Films that add drama to fashion design The Versace Murder from 1998 and the upcoming Gucci and Isabella Blow biopics.
The Devil Wears Prada cost $35 million total. The $100,000 budget for the film's costumes was supplemented by help from friends from throughout the industry. Ultimately, Field believes, at least $1 million worth of clothing was used in the film, making it one of the most expensively costumed movies in cinema history. Above Ivory Angora Coat from Yigal Azrouel, her hat and gloves are Chanel. The purse she carries, a Calvin Klein Gold Python Hobo bag. Below a website chronicles each and every look from the films and links to online sites where you can buy the looks.
Movies for Fashion Inspiration
Wednesday, December 15, 2010
Fashion Design on Film (David Bazner)
Geoffrey Macnab, “Why Fashion On Screen Lacks Style,” The Independent
In the past, films specifically about fashion have been underwhelming. They have been visually appealing, but lack the characterization that makes watching a film worthwhile. According to Geoffrey Macnab, “Matt Tyrnauer's documentary Valentino: The Last Emperor has one quality that most fashion movies lack, namely emotional depth.” Many times, with fashion films, superficiality and exclusivity is so present that the movie becomes more of a parody. This can be seen in The Devil Wears Prada in which Merril Streep plays the role of a fictional Anna Wintour.
Even films about fashion that have received acclaim such as The September Issue lack true insight into the world of fashion. Grace Coddington takes center stage with her wit and humor, while Wintour, the Editor in Chief, “is a sphinx-like presence who betrays little sense of what is driving her.” Macnab concludes by explaining that the fashion industry has an abundance of talent and that that talent can translate into the film industry (as shown by Tom Ford in A Single Man). The issue at hand is that fashion cannot be taken at face value when used as a source of inspiration, but should be explored and challenged.
Bruzzi discusses the conflict between costume design and couture. In her discussion she explains the role of a costume designer -- which is to create looks that work cohesively with the character as well as the overall narrative of the film. A couterier, on the other hand, is more likely to create pieces that are more spectacular-- looks that take on a life of their own apart from the character who is wearing them. This can be seen with regard to the givenchy ball gown worn by audrey hepburn in sabrina. The audience becomes captivated by the beauty of the dress itself.
Bruzzi suggests that there is an independent alternative when it comes to costume design. The costumes need not be a distraction nor silent, they can be admired as their own entity.
Cathy Horyn interviewd Matt Tyrnauer, the director of Valentino: The Last Emperor for The New York Times Magazine. When asked questions about the film, it becomes apparent that not only is the Valentino couture dynasty a central focus, but also the relationship Valentino has with his partner, Giancarlo Giametti. The couple bicker and hug, it humanizes Valentino- his public image is only one part of him. Tyrnauer touches on the fact that the world of couture has changed with Valentino having stepped down – he was the last of his kind in the way he ran his business. The film seems to capture him in two different lights – viewers will get to see the image of Valentino they are familiar with (the glamour) but also, audiences will be surprised to see a more humble Valentino. A man with a sense of nostalgia, a man who is well aware of how far he has come and what he has created for himself.
The Big Lebowski, by Giada Fried
Tzar (2009) by Tsepkova Varvara
Film Tzar(2009) directed by Pavel Lungin
Costume designers: Ekaterina Diminskaia and Natalia Dzubenko.
Ekaterina Diminskaia and Natalia Dzubenko received Russian cinema awards in 2009 for the best work on costume for film Tzar(2009).
The film tells the story of the first Russian Tzar Ivan the Terrible. In 16th-century Russia in the grip of chaos, Ivan the Terrible strongly believes he is vested with a holy mission.
Tzar(2009) is a costume drama. Costume designers worked on traditional costumes of
the Tzar as well as recreated costumes of peasants.
The costume of the Tzar and nobility were hand made and hand embroidered.
Costume designers say that they went to India to get the fabrics for the costumes.
Rich fabrics such as velvet and silk were used to design the costumes.
A rich color palette is accurate for the costumes of nobility: deep red and deep green, blue.
Hats played a great role in the traditional costume of that era and in the film, there was more than 40 hats created for Tzar(2009). Kokoshnick traditional hats were used for girls. All head pieces were hand embroidered.
Mulholland Drive (2001) by Tsepkova Varvara
Mulholland drive(2001) is a statement about Hollywood being a "dream land" versus Hollywood being a very dark place. It is a postmodern film that provides multi layered narrative.
David Lynch coming from painting background treats his films as a painting where things are done exactly as they have to be. Each element in the movie plays a great role. Colors are carefully selected as well as objects are placed with meaning.
The costume design plays significant role in the narrative of the film and Ana Stofsky as well as Durinda Wood did a great job on costume design of the characters of Mulholland Drive (2001). Through understanding of the costume audience can get closer to the meaning of the movie.
Tuesday, December 14, 2010
The Prestige (2006): Kanishka Jain
The period mystery thriller The Prestige 2006 was set in the 19th Century, the film was well directed by Christopher Nolan and got numerous appreciations. Celebrated Costume Designer Joan Bergin designed the typical Victorian era costumes. The primary Protagonist Robert Angier played by Hugh Jackman is a stage magic and is a person with ample wealth and is dressed as the ‘Upper Class’ in the respective time. Bergin designed all the costumes in sync with the character and all of them were custom made.
The film was shot in the early 2000’s and the costumes were supposed to be kept very true to its time. So we see the use of tight fitting, calf length frock coats and a waistcoat or vest, cravats or neckties and breeches. The shirts were made of linen or cotton with low collars and were worn with wide cravats. Formal evening dress remained a dark tailcoat and trousers with a dark waistcoat as scene in the scenes where he is presenting on the stage. The protagonist gets on to be designated the title of Lord and thus his dress up later changes according to his status, though the colors grow more towards a sober tone than his earlier dramatic self. Consequently the character achieved the effect of the time line and as a viewer I was well satisfied in imagining the 19th century sensation.