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 'dresses'

Sandy Powell Dishes on Designing YOUNG VICTORIA at the Getty!

Photo: Charlie Fonville

Deborah Nadoolman Landis (L) and Sandy Powell.  Photo: Charlie Fonville

“Dress is a trifling matter…but it gives also the one outward sign from which people in general can and often do judge upon the inward state of mind and feeling of a person.”  — Queen Victoria, 1858

By Lauren Fonville

The indomitable Queen Victoria, England’s longest-reigning monarch was on everybody’s mind on Sunday as visitors flooded the Getty Center’s new exhibit, A Royal Passion: Queen Victoria and Photography in Los Angeles.

Continue reading ‘Sandy Powell Dishes on Designing YOUNG VICTORIA at the Getty!’

Awardsapalooza 2013: Recap!

awardapaloozasm

Hello, Frocktalkers, and happy new year!  We are finally done shooting season one of ‘Sleepy Hollow’, and I’ve been crazed with moving house and catching up.  I have seen a few movies (not all of them, sadly) and I have some recapping to do.  Here we go…

  Continue reading ‘Awardsapalooza 2013: Recap!’

Sleepy Hollow: Ask the Costume Department, Round 2

Crane

Hey there, Sleepyheads, Frocktalkers and friends!  I guess the timing of this column just proves that I am unable to keep a deadline when I am working.  What was supposed to be an “every Monday” feature is now destined to become a “once in a while when I have a moment” feature, so thank you for your patience while I find some quiet time to answer your questions.  Remember, you can post them any time on Twitter, using hashtag #shcostumes.  Here is the latest installment:

Continue reading ‘Sleepy Hollow: Ask the Costume Department, Round 2’

“Hunger Games” Costumes Head to the Auction Block

HG2

By Lauren Fonville

The odds are ever in the favor of “Hunger Games” fans craving amazing
memorabilia this month.

Blacksparrow Auctions will auction over 200 original costumes from the
2012 film on November 16, just one week before the release of its
sequel “The Hunger Games: Catching Fire.” Bidders can get in on the
action in person at Blacksparrow’s Los Angeles headquarters, by phone
and online. The original costumes designed by three-time Academy Award
nominee Judianna Makovsky will be unveiled at a reception on November
14.
Continue reading ‘“Hunger Games” Costumes Head to the Auction Block’

Halloween 2013!

vintage-halloween-costumes-1

It’s that magical, special time of year, Frocktalkers!  Halloween is almost upon us.  My email inbox is starting to fill up with requests and questions, so I thought I might just cut to the chase with a list of costumes for 2013 that are sure to be a hit at your workplace, party, or trick-or-treating adventure.  In case this is not enough for you, you can see previous years’ lists HERE, HERE, HERE and HERE. Get your credit cards ready, because I have purchasing links and everything.  And none of it has anything to do with looking like a slut-bag and sacrificing your dignity on some kind of man-made Whoreloween altar.  Here we go:

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Filmjackets.com Interview with Yours Truly

Death-Sentence

Hey there, Frocktalkers – Happy FRIDAY!  Here’s a little interview you can read on your phone while you are stuck in traffic on the 101 on your way home from work.  Our friend Rick over at Filmjackets.com interviewed me for his site, and I thought you might find it interesting, or maybe hilarious, or maybe it will make you want to punch me in the face.  I don’t know.  I hope you don’t want to punch me in the face, but I can’t control that.  OMG, is it the weekend yet?!  I am fried!!  INTERVIEW HERE  Enjoy, and have a great weekend, everyone!!

– KMB

The Great Gatsby

poster1

Hi everyone – I’ve just returned from a screening of The Great Gatsby, and wanted to briefly record my impressions here for you.  First of all, there are a TON of costumes. Like thousands and thousands of costumes, all very different from each other.  There are dance costumes and party costumes and poor people costumes and banker/Wall Street costumes and rich people costumes, etc., etc., etc., it’s exhausting! Bottom line: it’s beautiful.  But keep in mind, this is not a Merchant-Ivory movie; this is not the place to be looking for exacting period accuracy.  This is a Baz Luhrmann movie, and his specific vision is what comes to life here, courtesy of costumes and sets by designer Catherine Martin. Continue reading ‘The Great Gatsby’

Mama

Just some brief thoughts about Mama, since we start shooting on Monday and sadly I don’t have time to do a full review. It’s a scary movie, mostly contemporary with a few flashbacks to the 1880s. Bottom line – BRAVO for the great use of the three-wolf t-shirt. I won’t spoil the surprise for you, Frocktalkers, but watch the movie and spot the three-wolf t-shirt. Also nicely done: the Misfits t-shirts on Jessica Chastain. The overall look of the movie was augmented by great moody lighting and desaturation of the colors in the film (probably in post). The little girls are precious and also creepy, particularly the youngest daughter Lilly (Isabelle Nelisse). It’s a scary movie, but I thought it was pretty mild, actually. It’s a clean PG-13, and the costumes are interesting for sure! Look for the three-wolf t-shirt – it actually made me say “oooh!” out loud in the theater! Nice work, (costume designer) Luis Sequeira, and congrats to the entire costume team!

– KMB

Hyde Park on Hudson

Review Date: 11-8-12

Release Date: 12-7-12

Runtime: 94 minutes

Period: 1939

Costume Designer: Dinah Collin

Hyde Park on Hudson chronicles a time in American President Franklin Delano Roosevelt‘s life when he becomes intimately involved with his distant cousin Daisy. War looms in Europe, and the British Crown seeks his help. With King George VI and Queen Elizabeth coming for a visit, what to do about the mistress? FDR and Daisy’s relationship seems unlikely at best, however the costumes help to tell the story about class, privilege, status, and wealth.

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Lincoln

Review Date: 10-26-12

Release Date: 11-9-12 (limited); wide on 11-16-12

Runtime: 150 min (approx, unofficial)

Period: 1865

Costume Designer: Joanna Johnston

This film details the last four months of American President Abraham Lincoln’s life. Essentially, it covers Lincoln’s struggle to achieve passage of the thirteenth amendment to the US constitution, outlawing slavery. Along the way, it paints a loving picture of Lincoln as a doting, hands-on father, an involved, engaged husband, and a charismatic, determined leader.

Continue reading ‘Lincoln’



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