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 'new york'

Inside Llewyn Davis: Interview with Costume Designer Mary Zophres!

Poster

I thought the costumes in ‘Inside Llewyn Davis’ were so lovely, I just had to ask designer Mary Zophres a few quick questions about her work on the film. Here, she even gifts us with a few of her sources for vintage knits!!  BONUS!  Read on:

What were your discussions like with directors Joel and Ethan Coen about the look of this film? 

Our first discussion involved the intention and that it should feel like a documentary. And that it should have an almost black and white quality to it without shooting in black and white. I also knew it was roughly inspired by Dave Van Ronk, a folk singer who never really achieved a lot of fame.

Continue reading ‘Inside Llewyn Davis: Interview with Costume Designer Mary Zophres!’

Behind the Scenes: COPPER

Eagle-eyed Frocktalker Laura sent me this link.  It’s really cool!  New series COPPER (airs Sunday, August 19th at 10PM on BBC America) has some amazing costumes – 1860s New York City – and you can learn more about them HERE!  I can’t wait to watch the show, and congrats to costume designer Delphine White for the great work!

– KMB

Adventures in Costuming: Albright Fashion Library!

These Prada shoes.  These shoes.  Come on.

These Prada shoes. These shoes. Come on.

Frocktalkers, I have just returned from New York City, and WOW, do I have a find for you!!! It’s the Albright Fashion Library, and before you start thinking of a musty space filled with old books and magazines, let me tell you: it’s pure fashion. Not a book to be found. This is a place that lends clothing, and not just any clothing – top-of-the-line, first-run designer fashion – and tons of it.

Continue reading ‘Adventures in Costuming: Albright Fashion Library!’

Amazing Inspiration: OLEK

If this doesn't get your crochet hook humming, nothing will!

If this doesn't get your crochet hook humming, nothing will!

Hey there Frocktalkers! It’s been crazy around here, which is great news.  I wanted to share the website of this really amazing artist with you:  OLEK.  She is New York-based, and she works in crochet.  You just need to see it to believe it – she is ON FIRE!  She has crocheted wrappers/covers for tricycles, bicycles, cars, people, and the Wall Street Bull!  It’s guerrilla art, street art at its finest, and she does it with yarn.  I haven’t seen anything this exciting in a long time.  She has an installation piece up right now at the Pacific Design Center in LA – it’s in the Green Lobby, so please check it out if you have a moment!!

Pacific Design Center:  8687 Melrose Avenue, West Hollywood, CA 90069. (Exhibit runs through 6-9-11)

– KMB

Tim Burton: The Exhibition – on tour!

That’s right – the artwork, sketches, and general genius of Tim Burton are making their way around our globe, thanks in part to New York’s MOMA and exhibit curators Ron Magliozzi, Jenny He and Rajendra Roy.  Next stop: Australia!  The exhibit opens today at the Australian Centre for the Moving Image (ACMI) in Melbourne.  The exhibit will come to Toronto’s Bell Lightbox at the Toronto Film Festival on September 12 (to coincide with the Toronto Film Festival).  And then… Los Angeles!  LACMA will host the exhibit from May 29, 2011 to October 31, 2011; wouldn’t Jack Skellington be proud!?!  More info from the LA Times HERE!

– KMB

Julie and Julia


Review Date: 8-16-09
Release Date: 8-7-09
Runtime: 123 min.
Period: Contemporary (2002) and 1949 France – 1961 Connecticut
Costume Designer:  Ann Roth

I love Stanely Tucci.  I went out to dinner with a friend of mine last week, and upon hearing that we had both recently seen Julie and Julia, we exclaimed at the same time, “I love Stanley Tucci!!!”  This is a movie about food goddess Julia Child (Meryl Streep), cubicle mouse Julie Powell (Amy Adams), and the parallels between the lives of the legend and the frustrated woman who wants to be her.  Streep and Adams have garnered rave reviews for their work in this film, and they handily deserve the attention.  I thought the movie was charming and fantastic.  However, I stick by my love of Stanley Tucci – he is an understated hero in this film, and I’ll tell you why.

Oh yes, and Ann Roth did the costumes, so you know already know that they are brilliant.
Continue reading ‘Julie and Julia’

Saturday Night Fever – Synopsis

Review Date: 8-6-09    

Release Date:  12-16-77

Runtime: 118 min.

Period: Contemporary, 1977

Costume Designer: Patrizia von Brandenstein  

Tony Manero is a nineteen-year-old Brooklyn paint store clerk by day, living with his parents.  At night, however, he rules the dance floor at the 2001: Odyssey dance club.  Saturday Night Fever describes his existence, straddling these two worlds, and coming to terms with the expectations his family has for him and his siblings.  Saturday Night Fever is, in the end, much more than great dancing and an iconic soundtrack; it is about growing up, being accountable for one’s actions, and taking responsibility for one’s own life and happiness.

**  NB:  This film is rated R, and the plot described herein may not be appropriate for kids. **

Continue reading ‘Saturday Night Fever – Synopsis’

Saturday Night Fever – KB’s Review

 

Review Date: 8-6-09

Release Date:  12-16-77

Runtime: 118 min.

Period: Contemporary, 1977

Costume Designer: Patrizia von Brandenstein

 

I love this movie.  It is so dark, and at the time it was released, tapped into the zeitgeist of a large, young part of our population.  In a post-cultural-revolution reality, with a culture embracing its own diversity at last, along comes a movie that talks about all of it.  In Saturday Night Fever, we find forums for discussion about everything from women’s lib to racism – hot topics at the time – and yes, these issues are carried out, expressed and explored in the costumes.

  Continue reading ‘Saturday Night Fever – KB’s Review’



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