#TBThursday Review: SPECTRE’s James Bond and Other Sharp-Dressed Men

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Daniel-Craig-james-bond-BW-e1417693457606Cole Clay // Film Critic

The clothes make the character. It doesn’t take a fashion connoisseur to look at a costume design and draw influence to inflict upon one’s personal style. These silver-screen dreams are meant to be larger than life, something to strive for and emulate. Just take a look at your Facebook feed from Halloween and there must be several cosplay adaptations of famous movie get-ups.

With that being said, at one time or another we have hand-picked some fresh threads that gave us some semblance of feeling like we’re walking alongside the crew from OCEAN’S 11, but sadly, most end up looking like Ducky from PRETTY IN PINK. That’s the magic of movies at work, people.

With the release of SPECTRE (our review here), Daniel Craig’s forth go-round as the elusive James Bond (complete with an army of dashing Tom Ford suits), we at Fresh Fiction are bringing an onslaught of dapper gentleman who are dressed to kill… or drink White Russians.

psychoAMERICAN PSYCHO (2000)

There are a lot of things that can go into looking sharp. A clean shave (although today the same could be said for a well-trimmed beard), new shoes, or a new haircut. No matter how we change our appearance, it is meant to be a source of confidence. AMERICAN PSYCHO takes that notion a step further and shifts it into jealousy.

All of the film’s yuppie jocks at Pierce & Pierce, including Patrick Bateman (Christian Bale), use everything regarding image as a power play. Looking at the boardroom scene alone, personal aesthetics are measured in dialogue, whether actual or Bateman’s thoughts in voice-over. Valentino suits, Oliver Peoples’ glasses… but nothing is more suited as a source of power than the business card.

Taking it one step further in the scene where Bateman meets Detective Donald Kimball (Willem Dafoe), he fakes a phone call but immediately launches into an imaginary conversation regarding suits and tailoring. The man, as psychotic in his acts and notions as he is, always cares about his image, his look, and the fit of a good suit.
– Jared McMillan

 

dianekeatoninanniehallANNIE HALL (1977)

The nebbish neurosis of Alvy Singer in ANNIE HALL was essentially star/writer/director Woody Allen playing a version of his public persona. As timeless as Allen’s black-rimmed glasses may be, it’s the titular Annie Hall (Diane Keaton) that steals the show. Her flamboyantly confident hodgepodge of outfits were far too progressive for women… like my mother to comprehend 40 years back.

It was the quirk and the confidence of Hall that made Keaton a star and even though she is portrayed as naive she knew exactly what she was doing rocking that fierce vest and tie combo. At the beginning of ANNIE HALL singer says, “I’d never join a club that would allow a person like me to become a member.” Well, you two are ingrained in a very important club as one of the best dressed couples in cinematic history.

 

B85jzLhIQAEEmVxTHE BIG LEBOWSKI (1998)

Living the life of leisure is a tough task for any man, but not for Jeffrey Lebowski (Jeff Bridges), aka “The Dude.” His jelly flip-flops, earth-toned bathrobes and overall effortless bravado has become not only a symbol of comfortability, but a shrine for all of us to live by.

Fans of THE BIG LEBOWSKI should (and quite frankly probably) already do know that most of The Dude’s wardrobe came from Bridges’ own closet, which gives a new meaning to method acting. 17 years after the film’s release “His Dudeness” is forever immortalized as a fashion icon for not giving a flip what he puts on his body, or anything else besides intentionally falling in the lowest tax bracket possible. And that ladies and gentleman is the definition of cool.

driveDRIVE (2011)

When you look at most of Ryan Gosling’s movies, he always knows how to rock a suit on and off, especially if you’ve seen CRAZY STUPID LOVE. But when it comes to looking menacing and cool simultaneously, nothing compares to Gosling donning the iconic scorpion jacket– accompanied by some leather gloves, a denim jacket and jeans, and, of course, the toothpick.
– Preston Barta

CCkZCMMWEAAyRz_RUSHMORE (1998)

Whatever gawky ora Jason Schwartzman conjured up to play 15-year-old multi-hyphenate student Max Fischer sure did resonate– not with the well-to-do squares who shop at Brooks Brothers, but with the “hipper than thou” Urban Outfitters crowd. Maybe that’s because director Wes Anderson had a drastic leap forward with his meticulous yet mannered sense of style that was posed upon the art direction of RUSHMORE.

His character Max, led the charge with his nerd-chic attire and confident demeanor that tackled everything from a red beret, to a groovy fencing outfit. *Spoiler Alert* It really is a shame Fischer didn’t get the girl at the end of the movie.

SPECTRE opens tomorrow.

About author

Preston Barta

Hello, there! My name is Preston Barta, and I am the features editor of Fresh Fiction and senior film critic at the Denton Record-Chronicle. My cinematic love story began where I was born: off planet on the isolated desert world of the Jakku system. It's there I passed the time scavenging for loose parts with my good friend Rey. One day I found an old film projector and a dusty reel of the 1975 film JAWS. It rocked my world so much that I left my kinfolk in the rearview (I so miss their morning cups of green milk) to pursue my dreams of writing about film. It wasn't long until I met two gents who said they would give me a lift. I can't recall their names, but one was an older man who liked to point a lot and the other was a tall, hairy fella. They got me as far as one of Jupiter's moons where we crossed paths with the U.S.S. Enterprise. Some pointy-eared bastard said I was clear to come aboard. He saw that I was clutching my beloved shark movie and invited me to the "moving pictures room" where he was screening the 1993 film JURASSIC PARK to his crew. He said my life would be much more prosperous if I were familiar with more work by the god named Steven Spielberg. From there, my love for cinema blossomed. Once we reached planet Earth, everything changed. I found the small town of Denton, TX, and was welcomed into the Barta family. They showed me the writings of local film critic Boo Allen. He became my hero and caused me to chase a degree in film and journalism. After my studies at graduate of the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, I met some film critics who showed me the ropes and got me into my first press screening: 2011's THE GREEN LANTERN. Don't worry; I recovered just fine. MAD MAX: FURY ROAD was only four years away.