“Tales of Manhattan” it’s not what you wear, it’s how you wear it!

Hello again,

Writing to you from one of my favorite places in Budapest, the “Costa coffee” where most of my previous assignments were written, and a lot of of caffeine blended with nervous batterings of my left leg were turned into  passing grades. There song playing right now is about a girl moving near to the Vatican, so there is no escape from  my Italian home away from home, away from home. But let’s get back to the main point of this blog, my present travel sadly has nothing in common with fashion, film, or any kind of festival, but my three day walk down memory lane is something i needed for a while now. However it does not stop me remind you about my trip to the “Fashion in Film Festival”, which unfortunately is over.

The fist movie I watched( beside the short “In which we live: Being the Story of a suit told by itself”), was “Tales of Manhattan”, the 1942 masterpiece, directed by Julien Duvivier, and having a star cast that is just too long to mention. At the festival, the movie was presented by Timothy Long, a fashion and museum curator, presently working at the “Museum of London”, and whose passion for fashion and history turned him into a fashion version of Indiana Jones I guess( well that is my personal association, don’t hold it against me). You can check his amazing Instagram Here! One of the concerns he actually expressed before the screening, was the general issue with old movies, there are some details that we can’t and do not understand, they are too specific to the time-period. However I found the movie to be positively charming.

The so called composition of the movie is something i enjoyed a lot, and the costumes, hair, the designs were just a pleasure to witness (i will include a couple of screenshots below so you guys have an idea). The main “character” so to say is an extremely expensive and perfectly sown tailcoat, that remains on the screen, however always in the background of the story for most of the screen time. Like a totem, it is passed from person to person, going through different situations a to people of different social status, from the highest( an extremely popular actor), to the lowest( a man living in the worst part of a God forgotten village). If you read my previous posts, you know that I already touched on the idea of resold clothes and the story behind them, and here the idea is slightly different. The tailcoat works like a totem, a “rabbit foot” as one of the movie characters calls it. It gives power to the object, but we still don’t really know whether the coat is actually “cursed/blessed” at the beginning of the movie by one of the tailors, or we are merely witnessing the lives of ordinary people, going though series of somewhat extraordinary situations.

By the idea of the story, it is supposed to bring luck to whoever wears the tailcoat, and as we know luck works in mysterious ways, sometimes being disguised as misfortune at first. The separate stories give us a better visual of the life of that period, and from a fashion perspective, the costumes are a real treat for the eye. It was a pleasure watching it and I highly recommend it as well.

That was all folks, I don’t want to ruin the movie for you with spoilers and bore you with long descriptions, so I will leave you here. I would also like to make a shout out to the great Marketa Uhlirova, the amazing Director and Curator of the festival who I had the pleasure to meet before the first screening, who made this festival possible. Check out her page Here! and Instagram of the festival Here!

Cheers guys,

P.S.

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