Carl telling us how (not) to science.
Meet SNL’s new face, Sasheer Zamata.
Straight fom UBC New York, Sasheer will be joining the cast of featured players when Saturday Night Live returns on January 18th. Look what we made happen, internet!
We’ll be watching, Sasheer. Break a leg.
Now, was that so damn hard, Lorne?
Do you mean UCB?
American Hustle Oscar Breakdown: Costume, Makeup and Hairstyling
SPOILER ALERT! The following blog entry contains spoilers to American Hustle. You have been warned.
American Hustle has been shortlisted for:
Best Original Screenplay
Best Actor (Bale)
Best Supporting Actor (Cooper and Renner)
Best Actress (Adams)
Best Supporting Actress (Lawrence)
Best Film Editing
Best Art Direction
Best Costume Design
Best Makeup and Hairstyling
Best Sound Mixing
Best Sound Editing
Best Original Score
Which according to @Slashy Flash, means it has the potential for a Big 5 clean sweep and “french sweep” (I totally just learned this term from him) But let’s talk about my two favorite things: Costume Design and Makeup and Hairstyling.
TL;DR verion of this post: American Hustle will be nominated for both categories, and win neither. This will be Michael Wilkinson’s (costume) first Oscar nomination, though you can appreciate some of his previous works in 300, TRON: Legacy, and Watchmen. This will be Evelyne Noraz’s (Makeup) first Oscar Nomination, with previous notable work on Boardwalk Empire. This will be Lori McCoy-Bell’s (hairstylist) first Oscar Nomination. She has been Bradley Cooper’s personal hairstylist since The Hangover.
Welcome to the 70s, specifically 1978. It was a groovy era, the pique of Disco, patterns were all the rage in clothing and interior design. Fake tans were everywhere; big hair was making its rise into the 80s; white eyeliner was aplenty (often accompanied by blue and purple eye shadows). Blue suits filled every high school prom. Texture in fabrics hadn’t been so popular since the Victorian era. This was the beginning of “the smokey eye” and and the period that marked the beginning of rogue being used more to contour than to brighten. It was a throwback decade, bringing back updo’s reminiscent of the 10s and 40s; as well as a decade of some of the more rememberable facial hair for men.
Tom Selleck, anyone?
I won’t lie. I completely geeked out over this film simply for the era. It’s one of my favorites, and has been since I designed Execution of Justice back in college. So without further ado, let’s break this down!
Makeup and Hair: The makeup for this entire movie was phenomenal! I geeked out the entire time, and I have to say, my favorite look goes to Jennifer Lawrence for Rosalyn Rosenfeld, hands down. Least favorite look would be Christian Bale as Irving Rosenfeld, but that’s more for a few technical slip ups than dislike of the design.
Ok, this particular film actually lost me in the first minute, and I literally asked myself “How is it on the shortlist?!” I asked @Apollo of the Dead the same thing actually because the movie starts off focused on Irving Rosenfeld getting ready. Namely, fixing his hair. But this falls under makeup. Why? Because he is wearing a very obvious bald cap. Oh, but of course! I mean, Bale is probably the actor most likely to shave his head in patches for a role, but he doesn’t, so they have to go with a partial bald cap/wig piece….And it’s bad. It’svery bad. I’m not sure if it’s even real hair (but damnit, they should have a budget for that! This is a big feature!). His character wears a toupee, and while I can forgive that being synthetic, what is supposed to be his real hair, I cannot. The bald cap is poorly applied. It had not been powdered. Or maybe is scalp is supposed to look oily and not match his face? I doubt it. The character looks like he’s been bald for years. It should match a little better. They also attempted to age him very subtly by added prosthetic eye bags under his eyes. The right one looks great! But look at his let eye and you can see the flashing for miles. Not to mention it’s a completely different shade from the rest of his face.
I feel bad for the makeup artists though. I’ve definitely flubbed like this before, and we have no say in what cuts the director finally uses. But this is just…This is bad. It’s legitimately the makeup in this very opening scene that will guarantee American Hustle isn’t winning Best Makeup.
However, for the rest of the film, they use Bale’s real hair (probably why they skipped the budget for that hair piece, since it was only used for likely one day), and I adored the character’s look. The eyebags appeared a lot better throughout the rest of the filming, including the scene with the mayor that was intended to be immediately after this. Ahem, continuity error for the betterment? Yes please. I mean…He’s gluing a fuzzy piece of crepe hair that looks like a merkin to the top of his head at the very beginning of the movie (no joke guys, the didn’t even try), you can only go up from there, right? He also wins for best facial hair in the whole film. No contest.
And don’t think I missed that can of Aquanet he used <3
But Amy Adams! Amy has perhaps the best look that shows off what a transitional period the 70s was for hair and makeup fashion. She comes in with a very classic look. Center part with big curls falling down, dark eyeliner (with the insides of her eyes left clean) is the heaviest part of her makeup. The rest of her look is very nude and natural—a modern style for the 70s while still clinging to the 60s and the feminist movement where makeup and trying to look the best for men was put aside in favor of natural beauty. But look at that picture at the top! That rouge! Those eyes! THAT HAIR! It’s 1978, we’re not far from the 80s, and she’s the one to remind us of that. The 70s introduced big hair, the 80s coined it. Micro-curls were all the rage, not to mention her very obvious fake tan. Kudos to the makeup dept for actually keeping it orange-toned, something many making a 70s piece today might overlook, what with all the more natural tanning looks we have available to us. It was different times back then.
Jennifer Lawrence was gorgeous. She looked like something straight out of a lookbook you might find at an out of date salon. I’m willing to bet her makeup sheet looked something like this. She has my favorite look in the entire film, mostly because I will always be a fan of the Gibson Girl hairdo. She’s very classic looking while obviously fashionable—a woman who prides her appearance over anything else, and it shows. And can we just take a moment to appreciate her nail polish? That red is probably the same color they were when she clawed her way into Irving’s heart and dug it out right in front of him. But she’s flawless. Even when she finally breaks down. Even when she’s crying. And the thing I love most about her look is that she is a character who, on the surface, seems to go through changes (going from a loving wife wanting to keep her marriage and her husband safe to leaving him and their son for a mobster), she always looks the same. Perhaps showing that she’d always been the same woman? Nothing ever really changed about her? Methinks that’s accurate.
Let’s all take a moment to appreciate Bradely Coopers micro-curls. The jewfro works for him. He really should rock it more. It’s also a great shoutout to all those white people who failed to ‘fro in the 70s, but still looked good trying. His character’s a pretty stylish man (as is the entire cast, lbr), so if they ever fast forwarded 5 years, I’m sure he’d look verydifferent.
Also, I’d like to make a shoutout to Jeremy Renner’s wig. It is perhaps my favorite hairpiece in a film in a long time…Especially since Bale’s at the beginning was the most recent comparison. That’s a damn nice wig. That’s a damn nice style. It’s very transitional, much like Amy’s character, and if it were just a bit more ginger, you can guarantee he’d never give you up, let you down, run around, or desert you.
And the special effects were believable. Nothing special, and well done.
Costume: Each time a man had the top button of his shirt undone, I screamed with joy on the inside. This was a small detail many likely didn’t notice, but says so much about that decade’s fashion. It was a time when men (like women) really started to take pride in comfort in their fashion. There were also timeless looks: Blue suits, velvet suits, tween jackets…and cleavage. CLEAVAGE FOR DAYS, AND NOT A BRA IN SIGHT!
There was literally nothing about the costume design I found jarring. Michael played it safe, sticking to the classic colors of the era: browns, blues, and white, and very muted oranges, greens, and yellows. There were plaids, paisleys, sequins, and all the textures you could ever want. The empire waist in Jennifer’s white dress was absolutely stunning, and one of my favorite pieces.
I loved Irving’s look. I loved his sunglasses. I loved how his clothes never seemed to quite match and how eclectic he seemed—it was as if you could never really pin down what kind of guy he was, or maybe he couldn’t make up his mind? Perfect for a con artist stuck between two women, right? His plaid jacket (see picture above) is one of my favorites and something I’ve actually touched about a year ago in the same vintage store Mad Men gets the majority of their wardrobe from. I recognized it in an instant, because I’d made jokes about it and “thank god the 70s are coming back!” But he is just…This is quite definitely the best costume design in the entire film.
Richie, funnily enough, a comment is made to Sidney at the beginning of the move about him by Irving. “Are you dressing him like me?” Because she’s pretending to be in love with Richie (while actually falling in love with him), and Irving’s already jealous…Now the guy taking his woman even looks like him?! This is great! It was really fun to see how whenever Richie was working with Sidney and Irving, he really did seem to follow and mirror Irving’s style, but when he obviously picked his own clothes he was very….well, boring is a harsh word, but there was nothing memorable about his sold, textureless suits while he’s sitting in the office talking to Louis C.K.
Renner’s the same level as boring Richie. He’s true to the period, rocking a ruffled dress shirt and bow tie, but there’s never really anything that stands out about his attire.
But Amy and Jennifer are the fashion money shots in this whole film. Again, Jennifer’s character’s fashion follows with her makeup. She’s unchanging, clinging to the same styles. They’re gorgeous and stunning as she is, and almost too tame for the brash character she plays, but absolutely sexy in the perfect way. That. White. Dress. I want it on my body right now, but I’d never look as good as her in it. The dress she wears when they have dinner with Carmine and his wife is lovely too, and I adore how the neckline is opposite the mayor’s wife. It’s very complimentary to her and something she shows how different the two women are. They hit it off and are instant best friends, but they are both very polar opposites as wives. Dolly is loving and doting to Carmine and a dedicated mother who loves her family, and Rosalyn is…well…holding Irving by the balls with a jailchain and threats to take his son away in divorce.
So I found it stunning that their hair was styled similarly, but one’s blond the other brunette (intentional considering Dolly’s actress was naturally blonde before this), and while their dresses match, the cuts show a distinct difference in personality (see bottom pic above).
And of course, Amy traveled effortlessly from classic 70s to near 80s just as her makeup did. Chiffon sleeves on button down dresses that stopped at the knees. Plunging necklines that left little to the imagination. Maxi dresses, and everything clung to her body in perfection reminding us all that the 70s were the waning period after the biggest sexual revolution we’ve ever had. She was used as a stylepiece and representative and it worked!
Why it deserves the nominations: Both the makeup and the costuming was gorgeous, accurate, and subtle in their character definitions. There were some definite great looks, and while I didn’t cover it: the accessories were beautiful which is hard to come by in films (especially period). The entire piece was very intentionally stylized, and you can tell a lot of thought went in to each look for every character (even the speaking extras) from color choices to cuts and patterns and silhouettes.
Why it won’t win: Bale’s makeup at the beginning was terrible. As good as the rest of the film was, it’s not likely that will be overlooked. It definitely takes you out of the movie for a good three minutes, which is terrible for an opening scene. While the Hair and Makeup styling was on point beyond that, there’s really nothing about it that stands out against the other contenders, and that one mistake will likely cause it to lose. And while the hairstyling might have made up for the makeup, unfortunately Cooper’s personal stylist is up for the win, and he had the least interest hair style of the main cast. If only they nominated the actual designer…hmmm.
The costuming was likewise gorgeous, but poor Michael played it too safe. It’s a period piece, so it stands a good chance, but in a few months, there’s nothing memorable that that will stay in your mind. To put that into perspective, anyone remember Rose’s black and white dress when she steps out of the car at the beginning of Titanic? Remember that hat? That’s what wins costume Oscars, designs that not only show artistic thought and period accuracy, but also stun audiences and leave you remembering how gorgeous that green dress was and why would she ever want to kill herself while wearing it?!
Ahem, Titanic will forever be my favorite costumed piece, just so you all know.
Whoever posted this originally, I HATE YOU
Sometimes I get sad because I remember that Sam and Cas are both card carrying members of the ‘Dean told me not to do something but I did it anyway and broke the world’ club
That’s a pretty tough club to get into.
*aggressively celebrates Christmas to the Pacific Rim soundtrack*
I swear to god, it’s the only thing that will drown out the Christmas songs and religious songs coming from the rest of the world.
Favourites in 2013 | Mako Mori (Pacific Rim)