Battle Royale: Cool Movie Costumes

Bruno is out this week (you might have noticed). So we’re hosting a movie-costume fashion fisticuffs extravaganza -bonanza. Thing...

A flair for fabrics is the only fighting pedigree necessary to compete, and the words 'TK Maxx' might just get you killed.

Enough of the chit chat. Bring on the costumery!

Barely-There Costumes

Barbarella (Jane Fonda) Barbarella (1968)

Boy, the Galaxy must be a pretty hot place, as Barbarella spends more than a little time running around sans clothing - perhaps it's all the fur lined spacecraft... or the copious amounts of sex.

When she does put something on, it’s often so tiny it can barely be called an outfit… then again, she’ll be out of it again soon.

Built-In Nipples That Predate Joel Schumacher Factor: 10

Not As See-Through As We Had Hoped-ness: 8

Cool Costume Rating: 9

Beaten into kinky submission by…

Loana (Raquel Welch) One Million Years BC (1966)

There are no practical reasons for anyone, even a million or so years ago, to wear so little, but this is the movies! Practical is null and void, and thankfully so.

Wearing only the fur of a small ferret, Welch is blissfully unaware of any Ice Age rumors, and was probably the reason the dinosaurs died out, running around like that…

Just What Animal Did That Used To Be? Factor: 9

Responsibility For One Million Erections-ness: 10

Cool Costume Rating: 10

Next: Royal Costumes [page-break]


Royal Costumes

Queen Elizabeth (Cate Blanchett) Elizabeth: The Golden Age (2007)

The Virgin Queen was likely so because no-one could get their your way through those multiple layers of material with a blow torch, let alone seductive goodwill.

The filmmakers lavished all their attentions on the costumes and sets, and it shows. Shame they forgot to put the same passion into the rest of it.

More Frills Than A Festive Doily Factor: 9

Raleigh Can Conquer The World But He Can’t Conquer Me-ness: 10

Cool Costume Rating: 8

Given it from all angles by...

Marie Antoinette (Kirsten Dunst) Marie Antoinette (2006)

Sofia Coppola’s ill-received take on the life of the great French queen took serious helpings of poetic licence cake, and ate it.

With more anachronisms than a Ben-Hur chariot race, Antoinette wins because of the cheeky pair of Converse All-Stars that turn up during the shoe and cake montage… and because we’ve always had a thing for Kirsten Dunst.

Yes The Costumes Are Lovely, But Can We See Your Bottom Again? Factor: 10

Ruining The Economy With Expensive Taste In Clothing-ness: 9

Cool Costume Rating: 10

Next: Comic Costumes [page-break]

Comic Costumes

Batman (Christian Bale) The Dark Knight (2008)

In The Dark Knight , Bat-Bale redesigns the Batsuit to make it possible, in a franchise first, to be able to rotate his neck in a manner that turns Robocop green with envy.

Lighter, more manoeuverable, and the only compromise is that now Bats is more prone to close-range knife attack – which he proves by going and getting stabbed.

What Do You Mean No Nipples? Factor: 10

Okay We Can Do Without Nipples, But Where’s The Codpiece?-ness: 9

Cool Costume Rating: 9

Shown the vanishing pencil trick by…

The Joker (Heath Ledger) The Dark Knight (2008)

With an ambiguous origin leaving us none the wiser about the enigmatic madman, we only know one thing for sure: he’s got a wicked tailor.

Fantastic custom-made threads, including a particularly trendy waistcoat, his colour co-ordination leaves most other rogues in the dust - and makes Bats’ basic black suit look very boring.

Did You Put Your Make-Up On With A Gun? Factor: 10

Kinda Sick Of Seeing Guys Copying This For Fancy Dress-ness: 10

Cool Costume Rating: 10

Next: Red vs. Green [page-break]


Red vs. Green Costumes

Satine (Nicole Kidman) Moulin Rouge (2001)

The famous red gown, handmade by Baz Lurhman’s wife and Moulin Rouge costume designer Catherine Martin, is the jewel in a particularly dazzling crown of costumes.

To say that Satine is a part-time dancer and full-time prostitute, she doesn’t half get to wear some snazzy get-up. It’s enough to give you a case of the Ewan McGregors.

Is The Dress That Red, Or Is She Just Very Pale? Factor: 10

Using A Fancy Dress To Gain A Higher Price For Your Wares-ness : 9

Cool Costume Factor: 9.5

Thrown up against a bookcase by…

Cecelia (Keira Knightley) Atonement (2007)

Another handmade gown, this time by costume designer Jacqueline Durran, the iconic green dress was voted best movie costume of all time, possibly in a poll of Keira Knightley fans and lovers of the colour green.

As for the winner, well it’s the Ashes, and there is no way an Aussie dress is going to beat an English one - though we feel the colours should probably be switched…

Yeah, We’d Go To Prison And Then War For That Factor: 10

Distracting Us From Noticing Just How Thin She Is-ness: 10

Cool Costume Rating: 10

Next: Pimped Out Costumes [page-break]

Pimped Out Costumes

Ruby Rhod (Chris Tucker) The Fifth Element (1997)

Flamboyant, as camp as a Christmas tent and with clothing turned up so loud he needs a megaphone of a voice to be heard over it, Chris Tucker’s space-age Queen is almost the most memorable thing about this film. Almost.

He certainly does a good job of stealing every scene he’s in, thanks in large part to the array of weird and wonderful costume changes, hairstyles, and witty quips.

Would Probably Get Punched After 30 Seconds In Real Life Factor: 10

He’s Wearing That And He Still Get’s The Ladies-ness: 9

Cool Costume Rating: 9

Bitch-slapped with a pimp cane by…

Huggy Bear (Snoop Dogg) Starsky & Hutch (2004)

For this film adaptation of the classic TV show, Director Todd Philips wasted no time in casting the coolest cat on the planet in a role he was virtually tailor-made for.

As we all know, pimping ain’t easy. But with his outrageously styled matching outfits, jewellery and accessories, Huggy Bear goes a long way to making pimping look fun. Wins this round because, well, who would you rather spend time with?

He Breaks The Law And Exploits Women, But It’s Snoop Dogg! Factor: 10

So He’s Basically A Snitch, Right?-ness: 10

Cool Costume Factor: 10

Next: Ultimate Cool Costumes [page-break]

Ultimate Cool Costumes

Snake Plissken (Kurt Russell) Escape From New York (1981)

Snarling, surly, mono-optical mercenary who always gets the job done, Plissken is cooler than a sub-zero cucumber because he could kill everyone in the room, look good doing it, and still get the girl.

His dress sense is more out of necessity than fashion, opting for commando style attire. Though we like to think he cut the sleeves of his T-shirt himself, to show off the guns…

Okay, So We’re Totally Thinking Of Getting An Eye-Patch Factor: 10

Depth Perception Defying Awesome One-Eyed Fighting Skills: 10

Cool Costume Rating : 9

Driven to develop a split personality by…

Tyler Durden (Brad Pitt) Fight Club (1999)

The pinnacle of male fashion in the movies and subsequently named near the top of every best-dressed character list, Tyler Durden is the man every man wants to be.

Not bad going for a figment of someone else’s imagination dressed exclusively in clothing from vintage stores – so stylish is Durden, so good looking, so damn awesome, it’s enough to make you think about switching sides…

Where Can We Get That Outfit, Even Though We’ll Never Pull It Off Factor: 10

Soap Making Skills: 10

Cool Costume Rating: 11

Next: Fashionista Costumes [page-break]

Fashionista Costumes

Andy Sachs (Anne Hathaway) The Devil Wears Prada (2006)

A twist on the classic of the ugly duckling, Andy starts off as a poorly dressed, fashion-ignorant wannabe writer, who learns how to dress. And boy does she.

Going from sweaters and jeans to… more expensive jeans, and expensive blazers, not to mention the expensive shoes and accessories, Andy shows the fashion dork in all of us that with lots of money, we too can be stylish.

When Is Princess Diaries 3 Coming Out? Factor: 10

Didn’t Really Like You In Brokeback, But You’re Good In This-ness: 9

Cool Costume(s) Rating: 9

Walked over with expensive heels by…

Rebecca Bloomwood (Isla Fisher) Confessions of a Shopaholic (2009)

That girl from Home & Away stars as a credit-addicted, debt-riddled fashion victim who lives to shop… and manages to make it all work out for the best in a completely plausible way .

Unlike Andy, Rebecca was born well dressed, and her sense of style isn’t just a part of her personality, it’s who she is. Rebecca wins this round because some people just have the gift. For everyone else, there’s Mastercard.

Not Really Sure What’s So Special About The Green Scarf Factor: 10

Ooh, That Hugh Dancy Is Cute!-ness: 10

Cool Costume(s) Rating: 10

Next: Barely There Costumes, Round II [page-break]

Barely There Costumes, Round II

King Leonidas (Gerard Butler) 300 (2007)

When going to war, the first thing on most folk’s minds would be; how do I not die? The answer is probably armour of some kind. Not Leonidas and his Spartans, they’ve got other ideas. Totally opposite ideas in fact.

Adorned in just a pair of leather underpants and a cape, the arrows won’t exactly bounce off, even if they've got pecs of steel - but dammit, they worked hard for these muscles, and they’re going to show them off!

Leather Underpants? Don’t You Find You Get Sweaty And Chafe? Factor: 10

Where’s Our Gym Card?-ness: 10

Cool Costume Rating: 9

Put in a timewarp by…

Rocky Horror (Peter Hinwood) The Rocky Horror Picture Show (1975)

When talking about The Rocky Horror Picture Show , most folks think about Frank N Furter, or the Meat Loaf cameo. But the most fashionable man in the film is clearly Rocky Horror in his gold hotpants. Just ask Kylie...

The Spartans have nothing on this genetically engineered pretty boy. He’d probably have seduced half of them before they managed to chuck so much as a spear - he brought his own spear anyway…

Beach Direction Giving Skills: 10

Is That A Torpedo In Your Pants, Or Are You Just Happy To See Us?-ness: 9

Cool Costume Rating: 10

Next: Iconic Costumes [page-break]

Iconic Costumes

The Girl (Marilyn Monroe) The Seven Year Itch (1955)

It doesn’t get much more iconic than the moment when Monroe’s character straddles a vent and lets the air from the subway blow up her dress… Which red-blooded male among us hasn’t secretly wanted to do the same… er… see someone do the same?

The white dress is synonymous with the scene, though a different coloured dress would be more appropriate, because once again Monroe is the bridesmaid of cinematic fashion.

We Respect Monogamy, But We’d Have Given In To Temptation Factor: 10

Where’s The Nearest Subway Grate, Just Out Of Interest-ness: 9

Cool Costume Rating: 9

Face ripped off and eaten for breakfast by…

Holly Golightly (Audrey Hepburn) Breakfast At Tiffany’s (1961)

The little black dress is the most essential part of any woman’s wardrobe, and Holly Golightly’s little black dress is the most iconic of them all.

Put together with pearls, gloves and adorning of the most beautiful brunettes to ever grace the screen, the outfit is simply unbeatable – and Holly doesn’t have to resort to flashing her knickers to win votes.

Our Little Black Dress Isn't Nearly As Cute Factor: 10

Can You Propose To A Movie Character?-ness: 10

Cool Costume Factor: 10

What did we miss? Who should have won? Comment on!

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