The Master” is the best example of vintage menswear I’ve seen in a film since 1999’s “The Talented Mr. Ripley”, which perfectly captured the post war American leisure society living in Italy during the 1950s.

In the sixth collaboration with director Paul Thomas Anderson, Academy Award winning designer Mark Bridges completely brings classic 1950s menswear and postwar USA back to life in a remarkably new and vital way.

“The idea was not to make it look foreign – like another planet – to the contemporary eye. You just want to make it accessible. It had to tell the story and I love setting things as specifically as possible in a certain time period – that’s why I liked 1950. The story begins right after the war, in 1945. The film kind of suggests that Freddie wandered around until the time when the rest of the film takes place (1950). Things were sort of compressed.”

{SOURCE: Frock Talk}

Throughout watching the film, you can only enjoy the tingling sensation of wanting when seeing some of the great looks they were able to put together for the film.

Whether it’s Joaquin Phoenix’s laid back, baggy, and a little off-kilter looks, or Philip Seymour Hoffman’s more dapper and gentlemanly style, each is a beautiful orchestration of textures, colors, and patterns bringing to life the 1950s in hues of dusty rosy, tans, ocean and emperor blues, as well as deep reds and greens.

One of the most striking features has to be the use of graphic ties, which add a lot of character to both leading men. Their styles are classic American with a bit of a twist.

The ultimate favorite piece has to be Philip Seymour Hoffman’s Mexican/South Western print rayon shirt he wears in the desert with Joaquin Phoenix as they dig up his “life’s work”. A beautiful shirt in that dark green with an amazing pattern- the second that lit up the screen, I was enchanted, and like a zombie in a trance began saying – “Must have shirt…”

Try finding a shirt like that anywhere. Not gonna happen.

It’s the subtle way they all come together that really stand out while watching the film. Each piece seems so decidedly imperfect, or unkempt, as so the realness of the moments really come across. It’s like taking a time machine, while at the same time, the choices of vintage graphic shirts and ties are all things that are readily happening in today’s fashion scene.

“I would do internet research, and find the strangest things, like people would have pictures of their family reunions from 1950, so I would get a look at people to see what “real” looked like. And that always helps, because real is imperfect. I think that’s one of the fun things, to make it work for the character but make it seem real – there’s a level of imperfection. Like, how well did you do it wrong? When I do a fitting, there are people who get really super detailed. Sometimes I will just stop, because it can just look too perfect. There’s gotta be just the right amount of wrong.”

{SOURCE: Frock Talk}

From the gabardine, tweed, denim, shirts, shoes, blazers, ties, sweaters, suits, and coats “The Master” is virtual opus of classic vintage menswear.

Truly we can say that Mark Bridges has indeed mastered his craft, no question about it. Not only is the film a beautiful revival of vintage menswear, it has redrawn the classic rebel archetype in a way that will only grow in its iconography as time passes…

This film was an absolute stand out for it’s take on vintage style, so if you are a fan of vintage clothes and styles as we are, make sure you are adding this one to your list! Also see it if you love movies and are tired of the status-quo….

+VIVE VINTAGE+

Until next time,

{theEye}

+

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