Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Inspiration: Can-Can

Today's inspiration is the 1960 movie of the musical Can-Can, starring Frank Sinatra and Shirley MacLaine. Reviewers slammed it since it seems the actors don't relate well to each other. I'll admit my favorite part of this movie are the musical numbers-- particularly the Adam and Eve ballet-- and the costumes. It was nominated for best costumes and best musical score academy awards.

orange one shouldered dress

I love Shirley MacLaine's one shouldered dresses. One shouldered dresses are a little trendy now, and I've never been a big fan of them. They either have a modern/art deco/80s feel or a Grecian feel to them and always have a very thick strap. The thin, decorative straps of Shirley MacLaine's dresses and the split bust attract me. I've already got a recon of some Indian pants planned to include those details, so be on the lookout for that.

I'm also in love with all the ruffles inside the can can skirts, although I won't be building one of those anytime soon. I also noticed the knots on top of the Can-Can dancers' heads. They remind me of the lazy knots seen in modern times on girls who rolled out of bed in their pjs and go to class.

I always find it interesting how I can date period films by the hair, and sometimes the costumes. In Can-Can, the volumous coifs point to the the 1960s, along with some of MacLaine's dresses which had a 1960s drape to them, even though it was supposed to be depicting 1886. I also watched Victor/Victoria recently, starring Julie Andrews, and I could date the film to the 80s by some of the cast's distinctly 80s hair. I can't entirly decide whether I like this or not. On one hand, it seems a little sloppy. I would love to see more historical accurency in films, or even just locational. In Can-Can despite it's Paris setting, MacLaine and Sinatra don't even try for French accents, leaving me to think they were Americans in Paris, especially when contrasted with Louis Jourdan who actually did have one. However, these are musicals. Historical accurency might not work out so well, and musicals are primarily designed to have shiny costumes and entertain, which these films do. Also, the hair does help me date the films. What do you think?

Pondering life's inaccuracies,
Ivy Frozen

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