The Best Fashion Films to Watch
Jun 20, 2020
Fashion has always been influenced by cinema.
It all started in the so-called “Golden Age”, in 1930, when cinema boomed and became the most famous form of entertainment in the world. With that, the period between wars was considered a great moment for the fashion and beauty democratization, in which stores were creating special accessories used for the promotion of clothes that appeared in the films. This was the same time when the entertainment industry started to become more influential than the Parisians Maisons, mainly because the big houses were unable to keep up with the flow of cinema releases.
Since that period, cinema has always been the biggest trendsetter for fashion and beauty, making the mass follow everything is being pictured in there.
Having this in mind, we decided to separate the best fashion films that have ever existed.
But, wait, we know you are thinking about what exactly do we mean with that. Well, we basically researched all films that have supported or influenced the fashion world for some reason. In all of them, you can find something related to fashion: maybe the movie has figurines that change the fashion world, an actress that became a fashion icon, or just fashion themes that are worth it watching and studying.
The list is long, so we decided to select just a few to open up the subject and raise the flame of curiosity in you!
1. The September Issue
If you dream about the day you will be working in a fashion magazine or if you just have the curiosity to know how crazy the fashion editor’s life is, this documentary is the best way to start!
You will follow closely the creation and production of the September issue of American Vogue magazine. You will feel almost like you are really living that – Besides the fact you will see all Anna Wintour steps and how is her critical look.
“The September Issue” is available on Netflix.
2. Annie Hall
“Annie Hall” is an iconic 1977 film that features Woody Allen acting and directing the film, as well as the wonderful Diane Keaton. Many say that the story is a real love story that Woody Allen has lived in the past, but there is no real confirmation of the veracity of the information.
The film is an oscar Best Picture-winning and featured Dianne using her own wardrobe for the character. The actress has always been very famous for her sense of style and has generated a lot of controversy for her androgenic style in the past.
“Annie Hall” is available on Hulu and Amazon Prime ($3.99).
3. Pierrot le Fou
Featuring the unforgettable Anna Karina, the movie from 1967 has a Bonnie and Clyde vibes.
Anna Karina plays Marianne Renoir, a woman that is being chased by OAS gangsters and decides to go on a traveling crime spree from Paris to the Mediterranean Sea.
Anna Karina on and off the screen was a style icon, so you can’t image the costumes, right? Beyond stylish!
The film was based on the 1962 novel Obsession by Lionel White and is considered one of the major milestones of the French movement “Nouvelle Vague” – Nouvelle Vague was an artistic movement in French cinema that had as one of its main characteristics to portray free love and fragments of the life of characters typical of the troubled time.
“Pierrot le For” is available on Amazon Prime for $3.99.
4. Rear Window
Featuring Grace Kelly that if one of the biggest fashion icons that ever existed, the film is a masterpiece not only for the fashion world but for Hollywood. Directed by Alfred Hitchcock, the 50’s thriller takes place in New York and it’s considered one of his best movies.
In the film, Grace Kelly plays Lisa Carol Fremont, a stylish socialite that steals every scene with her stunning wardrobe. According to the book “Edith Head – The Fifty Year Career of Hollywood’s Greatest Costume Designer”, Hitchcock wanted that Grace’s costume “was to look like a piece of Dresden china, nearly untouchable”.
“Rear Window” is available on Amazon Prime for $3.99.
5. Pulp Fiction
Considered one of the bests Quentin Tarantino films, “Pulp Fiction” portrays three criminal stories at the same time: A gunslinger that falls in love with his boss’s wife, a boxer that doesn’t do well in a fight and a couple that tries to execute a theft plan that gets out of hand.
The movie is a timeless source of inspiration and the iconic outfits of the female lead Mia Wallace are still imitated today.
Mia is the most powerful woman in the film and her clothes prove that: A good taste for tailoring, an androgynous vibes, and the iconic combo of cult white shirt and black trousers.
“Pulp Fiction” is available on Hulu and Amazon Prime ($3.99).
6. Dior and I
A documentary beyond inspiring, “Dior and I” follow the creation and production process of Raf Simons’ first collection for couture powerhouse Christian Dior.
The documentary highlight Simons’ difficulties in developing the collection and the differences between being a head-designer for a ready to wear brand and an haute couture. “Dior and I” show the pressure that exists to be a fashion designer in the digital age and make us question the reasons Raf Simons left the house 3 years later.
“Dior and I” is available on Netflix.
7. In The Mood for Love
This film is living proof that fashion can speak for itself.
“In The Mood for Love” is a 2000 Sino-Franco-Honguese film, directed and written by Wong Kar-Wai and is considered a real masterpiece. From the first act, clothes play a role in the film’s trajectory and help the story unfold.
Something interesting about the film is that the director filmed enough material to take the characters through the 1960s and into the late ’70s, but in the final cut he had to shorten the story.
“We had 20 to 25 dresses for Maggie for the whole film. Because we cut the film short, it becomes like a fashion show; she changes all the time”, tells Kar-Wai to Vogue.
“In The Mood for Love” is available on HBO Max.
Featuring Marlene Dietrich in one of her best performances ever, the film marked the fashion world and changed it forever.
At the time the film was released, in the early twentieth century, the use of suits in women was considered an astonishment. When Coco Chanel created the “English Look” (an outfit that consisted of a tweed suit and skirt set) in 1924, the first big step against that taboo had been taken. With that in mind, can you imagine how shocking it was to see an actress wearing a tailcoat in a Hollywood film at that time? An uproar!
Morocco was directed by Josef von Sternberg and is most famous for the scene in which Dietrich performs a song dressed in a tailcoat and kisses another woman, another scandalous thing for the period.
“Morocco” is available on Amazon as a DVD format for $11.38.
9. Funny Face
Audrey Hepburn was and always will be the greatest fashion symbol, so all the films in which she appears are worth watching.
What makes “Funny Face” so incredible it’s how perfectly everything is balanced and well adapted to the movie – Originally, Funny Face was a theatrical show.
Most of the costumes for the film were designed by Edith Head, but what draws attention is a collection of custom-designed dresses by Hubert de Givenchy – Special peak for the memorable white strapless dress with black embroidery and a double skirt.
“Funny Face” is available on Amazon Prime for $3.99
10. The Devil Wears Prada
Last but not least, “The Devil Wears Prada” is a classic of modern cinema.
Inspired by the day-to-day life of Vogue editor-in-chief Anna Wintour, the film tells the story of Andy, a recently graduated girl with big dreams, who will work at the renowned fashion magazine Runway. Her job is to be an assistant to Miranda Priestly, Runway editor-in-chief.
The film shows how difficult the fashion world can be and how much you need to be down to earth. If you dream of being a big fashion editor, “The Devil Wears Prada” will inspire you!
“The Devil Wears Prada” is available on Amazon Prime for $3.99.
As we said in the beginning, the list is long but we have to start at some point, right?!
All of these films have marked the fashion and film industry in some way, and are excellent sources for you who are interested in fashion and good movies.