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! **

Tag Archive for 'clothing'

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TEDx Pacific Palisades Talk is Up and Running!

Hi there, Frocktalkers!  It’s finally here – for those of you who did not get to make it to Pacific Palisades to see the big TEDx talk, here it is in its entirety.  Hope you enjoy it!  Big thanks to everyone who helped me with this:  Susanica, Carrie, Ruth, Anthony, Sam, Eladio, Mel, Ken, Michael, Michele, Michelle, Lauren, Stacy, Rebecca, Joseph, Beth, Carlos, Lois, Aasha, Darren, and all of my Chico Junior High girlfriends! Thanks to Andrew McGregor for inviting me to speak – it was nerve-wracking, but it was fun!  Have a great weekend, everyone!

 

Shameless Self-Promotion: New and Upcoming!!!

Upcoming

It’s a big week in the life of KB, y’all! Two projects I’ve worked my butt off on are debuting, and I want to tell you about all of it. First, Insidious Chapter 2 comes out in theaters on Friday the 13th. If you saw Insidious, you know there were some hanging chads at the end there… I am looking forward to seeing the film – I haven’t seen any of it edited or anything. It will be a nerve-wracking surprise to be in the theater, seeing the film for the first time along with audience members. What’s done is done, and I won’t be able to change it. I’m sorry to be missing the premiere; I understand that Universal Studios is doing a whole Insidious-themed haunted house this year – sounds like FUN! It would be so cool to see that. I’m sad to be out of town, missing this! I wonder what they will do with the costumes…?! If any of you go to this haunted house, will you please take pictures for me? Thanks! ☺

Second, on Monday night at 9PM/8PM Central on FOX… it’s SLEEPY HOLLOW!!! That’s what I’ve been doing here in North Carolina. The pilot was designed by the amazing and talented Sanja Hays, and I am designing the rest of the season. As much as I’ve said I would never design television, I have to tell you – this crew is a dream, and everyone working on the show has been so supportive, helpful and awesome. I’m grateful to be on this show, because it has changed my mind about television, and brought me a new appreciation for the art form. We are working our butts off, and I really hope you like the show. Tune in on Monday nights! Hope you all have a good week – stay tuned for more info to come!

– KMB

Drunk History: Interview with Designer Christina Mongini

Drunk History

By Lauren Fonville

We’ve been fans of Drunk History’s slurred, comedic take on American history and it’s slightly-off period costumes since its early days at a web series on FunnyorDie.com. Now the show created by host Derek Waters and director Jeremy Konner is finally getting a run as a full series airing Tuesdays at 10 pm on Comedy Central.

Who better than costume designer Christina Mongini to bring the show’s inebriated versions of events like Watergate and the Battle of the Alamo to life? The comedy vet has earned her chops as the costume designer for HBO’s Curb Your Enthusiasm and is about to go into production on season five of The League on FX.

We sat down with Christina to discuss Drunk History’s quirky aesthetic; its panoply of guest stars including Jack Black, Dave Grohl, Lisa Bonet, Owen Wilson, Luke Wilson, and Kristen Wiig; and the particular challenges of costuming comedy.

Continue reading ‘Drunk History: Interview with Designer Christina Mongini’

TEDx Pacific Palisades – This Saturday, 6/29

ted_logo1

Hey everyone!  This Saturday (6/29/2013) is the big TEDx talk.  I’ve been practicing my speech and honing my slideshow, and I think it’s going to be fun!  I’m not going to cry, and I’m not going to barf!  I’m not going to cry and I’m not going to barf!  If I keep repeating this phrase, I will be just fine.  If you’d like to attend the conference – and really, if you aren’t busy on Saturday, you should – I have a discount code for you for $30 off the tickets!  Here it is:  TEDXVIP.  Just go to the Ticket Purchase Page, enter the code where it says “enter promotional code” and you’re all set.  The tickets include lunch and the entire program of compelling speakers, so it’s a pretty good bargain. I will be talking about clothing, identity and costume design.  And I’m NOT going to barf!  Hope to see you there!  Have a great week, everyone!

-KMB

Reading Material!

color-theory

So, I’ve had my head deep in some books lately, in preparation for this TEDx speech I’m giving at the end of June.  It’s been very interesting to revisit the subject of costume design from an outside perspective.  In the talk, I’m trying to explain the concept of clothing as a visual language – one that we all speak, in various dialects.  A red dress to you may mean a very different kind of red dress to me.  So how do we talk about visual language with any real meaning?  Here’s where the following books come in handy.

Continue reading ‘Reading Material!’

Dribs and Drabs and Stuff

ted_logo1

Hey there, Frocktalkers!  Sorry it’s been such radio silence here.  My world has exploded in the past few weeks and I am scrambling to keep up with all of it.  There is some great news, though – I’ve been asked to do a TED talk – OMGsonervousIcan’tevenstandit!  I will be speaking at TEDx Pacific Palisades on June 29, 2013!  Yeah, exciting and crazy!  I will be talking about clothing and identity, and how we use the language of clothing in our work as costume designers.  Tickets available soon on the website – check it out HERE.

Also , tons of other cool things happening in the costume design world – on June 20, 2013 Costume Designer Sophie de Rakoff will be hosting a panel of costume designers for the Academy.  From the Hollywood Reporter:

Continue reading ‘Dribs and Drabs and Stuff’

Burt Wonderstone: Interview with Designer Dayna Pink!

Olivia Wilde as Jane in "The Incredible Burt Wonderstone"

Olivia Wilde as Jane in “The Incredible Burt Wonderstone”

Frocktalkers, I am very excited to share this interview with you.  I sat down for breakfast with costume designer Dayna Pink, and we ended up talking about everything from Tenacious D to the tenuous work-life balance in our industry.  Grab a cup of coffee and join us for breakfast!

Continue reading ‘Burt Wonderstone: Interview with Designer Dayna Pink!’

The Incredible Burt Wonderstone

Poster

Review Date: 4-2-2013

Release Date: 3-15-2013

Runtime: 100 min.

Period: Contemporary (flashbacks to 1980s)

Costume Designer: Dayna Pink

 

The Incredible Burt Wonderstone is a very interesting movie, and the costumes are awesome.  What kind of a dream job would it be to create a world of magic?  To span a few decades doing so?  To work with some of the best comedic talent in the process?  I sat down with costume designer Dayna Pink to discuss her work on the show, and I will run that interview soon.  But first, have a look at some of her outrageous and hilarious costumes.

Continue reading ‘The Incredible Burt Wonderstone’

Bombs, Spies, Torture and Violence: Zero Dark Thirty & Skyfall

Two films are out for your holiday viewing: both feature mind-numbing violence, explosions, espionage, gun battles, torture and death. One is based on actual events, and the other is based on a well-known set of novels. The stories are so outrageous; it’s hard to tell which one is standing in front of the mirror and which one is the reflection.

Continue reading ‘Bombs, Spies, Torture and Violence: Zero Dark Thirty & Skyfall’

Les Misérables

Review Date: 12-4-12

Release Date: 12-25-12 (USA)

Runtime: 157 minutes

Period: 1815 – 1832, France

Costume Designer: Paco Delgado

Most of us who work in the entertainment industry have seen at least one stage production of Les Misérables in our lives. To miss this musical theater opus would be like not seeing ET or Star Wars; it’s that big of a deal. Les Miz (as it is colloquially called) was first introduced to the stage in the form of a musical in the 1980s. It was a sensation. The music is haunting, the story is relatable, and it packs an emotional wallop. It is no surprise, then, that the current movie version of the musical does the same.

Continue reading ‘Les Misérables’



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