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+ STYLE IDOL+ A River Phoenix Runs Through It . . .

river phoenix

Wicked and wild. Gorgeous and full of life.

You can see sometimes in the eyes of this strange boy; a burning fire that piercing your soul. Even past the screen, beneath the surface of every photograph of him, there is a brilliant mystery still waiting to be discovered and the very depth of the man named River Phoenix.

He was the most beautiful child you’ve ever seen, like a little Elvis.

-Iris Burton, River’s manager

 

River Phoenix - Stand By Me- Vintage Style Idol

River Phoenix - Academy Award Nomination Ceremony- Graphic Sweater- Cool Guy- Vintage Style Idol

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It’s more the history of these awards that is so special to me . . .

His acting was top notch, and before the age of …. he found himself nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor with dozens of offers at his feet thereafter.

Fame was of little consequence to him, though, and instead he sought a life of refuge from the hustle and bustle of the business. The industry was not the priority, and from his very core, River was an undeniable artist who not only excelled in the art of acting, but was also an accomplished musician, humanitarian, environmentalist and animal rights activist.

River Phoenix - Prada Meinhoff- The Eye of Faith

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You’ll never find him fur or leather as he was the original vegan style star- before it was in vogue or a trend. He had a soft and sensitive heart for world issues, the future of our planet, and most especially the well-being of animals.

While we think of the 80s for all its excesses, River appears the total antithesis to this vision of America. Even with his popularity and success, River defied typical Hollywood standards through what he wore; appearing at major red carpet events sometimes in only a graphic T-shirt, or a cool graphic sweater.

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River Phoenix is Fierce- Vintage Style Idol

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Martha Plimpton and River Phoenix- Hollywood Grunge- Vintage Style Idol

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"Batman" Los Angeles Premiere

Plaid shirts, graphic sweaters, denim jackets, patterned shirts, and over-sized blazers were a staple for the young star, whose quirky style seems right in tuned with the vibe of the street today. And yet we probably never even realized that River Phoenix made his mark over twenty years ago in the same garbs we rock today.

Perhaps this was indicative of his adventurous heart, the way he dressed. A co-star in probably his most accomplished and enigmatic acting effort, My Own Private Idaho, Jimmy Reardon described a moment the two shared together shortly after filming the 90s art-house flick about a narcoleptic male hustler decked out in pure grunge glory:

One time we were up in the mountains, and the clouds came right up to the top of the mountain. River grabbed (my) arm and said, “We’re going to run and jump into these clouds and our whole past lives will dissolve, and everything will be new from then on. Hold on.” And we did that…it was incredible, and we landed on this soft iceberg kind of ground covering. But we jumped through clouds, literally.

It’s hard to imagine a star today who could even imagine being as fearless, but that’s just how River really was. Fearless.

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Born River Jude Bottom, River grew up in a religious cult in South America known as the Children of God. He was named River after the river of life in Herman Hesse’s Siddhartha, and Jude from the Beatle’s song. When their parents found that they were being embezzled by the cult and its leaders, they uprooted their children and moved to California where River was soon getting noticed for his movie star good looks, even as a boy.

He quickly began to take interest in acting and modelling, and it wasn’t long before his career took off. No one could deny the boy. He had a special edge that he never let go of until the very end.

Edward Lachman, superior director of photography for ‘Dogfight’ said:

 When I first met River, he had very long hair and he struck me- as he came out of an elevator-as an angel, some kind of supernatural being. An angel could be Gabriel, but an angel could be Lucifer too. He could as readily delve in to the deep dark recesses as he would fly up to the lofty, illuminated (places).

Certainly a zest for life was a strength of River, but it would definitely come into play with his tragic demise most mysteriously on Halloween night of 1993 at friend Johnny Depp’s bar – The Viper Room.

There is no doubting his talents, but there’s also no doubting the foolishness of getting involved with people who do not have your best intentions in mind. River was the unfortunate victim to a brainless party mentality that is ever prevalent in our society. Was it really worth it in the end?

River Phoenix- This Road Will Never End....

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I don’t want to die in a car accident. When I die it’ll be a glorious day. It’ll probably be a waterfall.

-River Phoenix

This year the world was shocked by the death of another young star who kicked the bucket at the expense of his family, friends, fame, and fortune – Cory Monteith, who died of an overdose much the same way River did. Heroine and alcohol. The same toxic cocktail that took the life of many more before them including Amy Winehouse,  Jim Morrison, and Janis Joplin.

It’s sad, so very sad, because these stars possessed such a zest for life and original spirit that didn’t need to compensate with heavy drugs and alcohol to make life interesting. They could have been resigned to just be themselves, and love every second of that.

River Phoenix- Bleach Blonde Cool- Vintage Style

This is why our advice at The Eye of Faith has always and will forever be to be yourself. Your truest self, beyond the effects of drugs and alcohol, you can have the most exciting and amazing life. You try to tread the line between reality and dream, and you can do this easily with the power of style and conjuring your idols to give you an extra boost away from the common day to day.

 “You would have thought we was ninety and had died in his sleep. The people who were saying this felt tremendous guilt that they had contributed to his death.

He’s already being made into a martyr. He’s become a metaphor for a fallen angel, a Messiah. But he wasn’t. He was just a boy, a very good hearted boy who was very $%##$% up and had no idea how to implement his good intentions. I don’t want to be comforted by his death. I think it’s right that I’m angry about it, angry at the people who helped him stay sick, and angry at River.”

-Martha Plimpton on River’s death.

We recommend this state of mind for all days and occasions, to keep you safe and elevated beyond the strife of the street.

Most people don’t know, but River was also a talented musician in a band called “Aleka’s Attic”. Here’s one of his songs to send you off with. Hope I gave us all something to think about, and some wicked new vintage inspiration for the road!

Also his long lost last film has been released for the first time. Check out the trailer here.

 

 

Don’t forget that XIXIXI gets you 25% Off in the {SHOP}

You can totally GET THE LOOK, as we have dozens of individual time travelled articles that will serve you well 

to invoke the spirit of River Phoenix. Above all, don’t forget to be yourself!

A little inspiration never hurts, though . . . 

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So you don’t miss out.

 

Until next time,

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Elvis Deluxe- Wicked Pompadour Wig

A Tribute to Philip Seymour Hoffman

A Tribute to Philip Seymour Hoffman from Ben Zuk on Vimeo.

Who wasn’t shocked by the death of Philip Seymour Hoffman? He was a genius, in our eyes, and it came as quite a shock to hear the news – he be dead.

philip-seymour-hoffman-death-hoax-hoax

Apparently news about his hoaxed death released a day before his actual death is actually a hoax. 

 

Just another reason one should think twice before befriending heroin.

It’s not gonna work out for anybody. 

Until next time,

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Elvis Deluxe- Wicked Pompadour Wig

Mark Bridges Masters Vintage Mens Style for “The Master”

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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American Vintage: Behind the Scenes of Paul Thomas Anderson’s “The Master”

With the Academy Awards freshly behind us, it’s come time to stare the future head on and see what’s patiently waiting in the wings for this upcoming year! One project in particular that seems to have many cinephiles speculating across the blogospher is auteur Paul Thomas Anderson’s (“Boogie Nights”, “Magnolia”, & “There Will Be Blood”) newest venture- “The Master”.

Shrouded in mystery, the film stars Joaquin Phoenix as a troubled drifter who finds himself the right-hand man to Lancaster Dodd (Philip Seymour Hoffman), a charismatic intellectual who launches a faith-based organization called “The Cause”. Set in the 1950s, Phoenix’s character begins to question the beliefs of the organization as it grows a fervent following.

Also starring Amy Adams and EOF Favourite, Laura Dern, the film is sure to stir up a lot of conversation with Anderson’s fictional religion “The Cause” being compared to the ever controversial religion of Scientology and it’s prolific rise throughout the 1950s headed by it’s founder, science fiction writer L. Ron Hubbard.

Anderson always has critical conversaions to tell about society in his films, and we’re sure “The Master” will be no exception.

One thing’s for certain, however- the staying power of vintage! Looks like on top of the 1950s of “The Master”, there will be plenty of period power this year with films like dirt backroad Prohibition-era “The Wettest County“, Beatnik 50’s “On the Road“, and of course the 1920’s decadent glamour of Bazz Luhrman’s “The Great Gatsby“; all will provide for some new classic vintage American moments!

Everything old is new again. So, if you’re excited for a sneak peak of some vintage American cool in the movies, check out these behind-the-scene photographs taken by Jack Erling on the set of “The Master”. No celebrities, but a great taste at some fantastic period costumes and locations! Makes you think they had a time machine!

Costume designer Mark Bridges won an Oscar on Sunday for his recreation of the silent era in “The Artist”, and from the looks of it he might be running the race again next year for “The Master”!

Enjoy! (Thank you, Blackbook!)

Sincerely,

-The Eye x

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