Welcome to FrockTalk, the web’s only costume-based movie review site. The goal of Frocktalk is to shed light on the magnificent artistry of costume design in motion pictures. Reviews on this site are written by working costume designers in the entertainment industry – people who know, better than anyone, what it takes to make it all happen. The focus of FrockTalk is not to comment on the big flashy costume dramas, but to call attention to the seemingly ordinary costume design work in film that silently and persuasively moves the audience toward understanding the characters. Costume design for motion pictures is an art form that deserves more recognition than it usually gets. Fancy, pretty costumes do not always equal effective, appropriate costumes. The art of the costume is in letting the audience know who the character is, before the actor even has a chance to open his mouth. Read on, and enjoy. ** CAUTION: ALL REVIEWS CONTAIN SPOILERS! **


Welcome to Frocktalk, your opportunity it get the inside scoop on costumes designed for the silver screen.  Here at Frocktalk, we only review movie costumes worthy of praise, excitement, awe and wonderment, and not in the way you might expect.

Costumes don’t have to be fancy, fussy, expensive or gorgeous to be good.  In fact, most of the costumes we will discuss on this site are, at first glance, rather ordinary.  They become extraordinary, however, when one discovers their deeper meaning.  It is the job of the costume designer to bring the character to life, to inform the audience who this person is, and what he is about, before the actor can even open his mouth.   What we as costume designers seek is appropriateness, costumes that evoke a story and set the scene for our characters.

All of the reviews for this site have been written by working costume designers and costume crew in the entertainment industry.  We know (all too well, sometimes) how hard it is to get it all done, to dress 700 background players for a 5AM call in the middle of nowhere, to have an actor replaced the night before shooting, to not have enough money to be able to buy the right accessories.  We know what it’s like to have continuity destroyed in the editing room.  We know.  We’ve been there.  We view these films with an insider’s compassion and perspective.  It is a miracle, sometimes, when it all comes together.

We celebrate these small miracles here at Frocktalk.  You’ll never see a bad costume review here.  If we think the costumes in a movie missed their mark, we’re going to leave it alone, with compassion.  We hope that the site proves educational and inspirational for our readership, especially to the people who create and produce entertainment.  We hope that Frocktalk sheds light on, and celebrates, the great achievement for which our fellow costume designers and costume crew fight every day.  We don’t get outta bed at 4 AM for nothin’.  Enjoy the site!

Frocktalk is dedicated to E. Marie Mullin, my grandmother, who opened my eyes to the world of sewing and textiles, and who inspires me with love, grace and passion for fast cars.




Kristin M. Burke (Costume Designer) was born March 20, in Orange, CA. Educated at Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois, she majored in both Radio/Television/Film and French Studies. Ms. Burke was trained in the art of costume design at Northwestern by Virgil C. Johnson, an acclaimed designer for opera and the theater. While at Northwestern, Ms. Burke garnered awards at the Seattle Short Film Festival, the Nimes Festival in France, and the Dallas Film Festival for her experimental short films.

She has designed costumes for over forty feature films, including Sex Drive, Crossing Over, Death Sentence, Bangkok Dangerous, The Grudge 2, Running Scared, The Cooler, The Slaughter Rule, and Star Maps. She has also designed costumes for music videos, commercials, and two television series. In addition, Ms. Burke is an internationally-exhibited artist, specializing in collage and mail art, and had her first solo exhibition in Los Angeles in September, 2001.

Burke has also authored two books – the first of which she co-authored with Holly Cole of Ohio University, Costuming for Film: the Art and the Craft, was published in August, 2005 by Silman James Press. It is a college-level textbook on the ins and outs of designing costumes for films. This book is also intended to reach industry professionals looking to broaden their understanding about the role of costumes in the collaborative medium of film.  The second book, Going Hollywood: how to get started, keep going, and not turn into a sleaze, was published in September, 2004, and is in use at film schools and universities in 7 countries.  Ms. Burke is honored to be represented by Marsh Best Management.

Selected by the Hollywood Reporter as “2005 Next Gen” Ones to watch under 35, February, 2005

Selected by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences for “50 Designers: 50 Costumes”, a tribute to Hollywood film costuming.  The exhibit of costumes and illustrations has toured the US, Canada & Japan.

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