{STYLE WISE – Summer Edition} Jake Gittes, “Chinatown” (1974)

jack nicholson- chinatown vintage poster

Man with Knife: You’re a very nosy fellow, kitty cat. Huh? You know what happens to nosy fellows? Huh? No? Wanna guess? Huh? No? Okay. They lose their noses . . .

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Jack is Whack- Behind the Scenes- Chinatown (1974) - Vintage

The scene almost comes out of nowhere, but its an integral piece of the puzzle in what is arguably one of the best films ever made.

Roman Polanski’s 1974 classic “Chinatown” was written by Robert Towne (who won the film’s sole Academy Award for Original Screenplay) and starred Faye Dunaway and the never better Jack Nicholson in a poignant reconception of the classic film noir that took the genre from the dark wet streets of the cold bitter city to the overheated dry spell of a Los Angeles bathed in tones of gold, cream, and pastel hues.

jack- jake gittes- chinatown (1974) - menswear- vintage- style wise- eye of faith

There had never been a hero before or since who spent most as much screen time with an obtrusive bandage covering his face, and yet still just be as dapper.

For the film, legendary costume designer, Anthea Sylbert, designed and crafted most of the pieces from scratch to ensure the perfect fit and tonality with the film’s washed-out summery palette. For Dunaway’s character, Sylbert took inspiration from classic noirs such as “Double Indemnity” and “Mildred Pierce”, but it is truly the stunning menswear for Jake Gittes who receives most of the love in the wardrobe department (which is very very rare, and much appreciated on our part).

anthea sylbert sketch- jake gitts- chinatown

menswear inspiration- the eye of faith- jack nicholson- jake gittes- chinatown-1974

Indeed, Sylbert has chosen only the finest materials to work with in crafting clothes for Jake. Three-piece suits made of quality wools, silks, and linens with wide lapels indicative of the period (1937). Best of all, you will never find him in your run of the mill suit – it always has some brilliant colour story to it, and with the summer heat, Jake isn’t afraid to embrace lighter colours (camel, khaki, sage – you should follow suit).

And what would a three-piece suit be without a crisp, clean, and modern fedora? Jake definitely has some serious style in spades.

Evelyn Mulwray and Jake Gittes - Vintage Style- Chinatown (1974) - The Eye of Faith - style wise

While watching the film, keep an eye out for impressive pocket square and necktie combinations. It’s a great way to pick up a few tips and garner a little inspiration. Don’t be afraid of pattern, and aim to stand out from the crowd.

There must be over a dozen separate looks over the span of the film, but that’s just the kind of guy Jake Gittes is. He knows the power of style, and what it means to dress to impress. After all, it’s much easier to go where you need, and get what you want, like that.

So let’s take a few pointers, and look at why almost 40 years later, “Chinatown” is the ultimate go-to for vintage style inspiration this summer!

rebel without a cause- jake gittes- style wise- chinatown (1974)

Jake: Son of a bitch! Goddamn Florsheim shoe . . .

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+CLICK HERE TO LISTEN TO JERRY GOLDSMITH’S HAUNTING SCORE+

Forever and always a favourite, add “Chinatown” to your list of films to watch this summer! Also, don’t forget to check out the {SHOP} for all the amazing finds, because we have just what it takes to be as stylin’ as Jake Gittes, himself. I definitely think he’d approve . . .

Don’t forget it – it’s “Chinatown” . . .

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

+DO IT LIKE A DUDE+

Dapper Beautiful 1960s Camel-Hair Blazer

[click here for more details]

Exquisite Condition

{ 38″ – Small }

$45

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Until next time,

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