Monday, April 2, 2012

Julia's Screen Style

Shouldn't those guards be saving her from the dress devouring her?
This weekend brought the release of the first of two Snow White films headed to theaters this year. This family-friendly take on the tale, directed by Tarsem Singh, features Oscar-winner Julia Roberts as the evil queen. And is not to be confused with the one this summer were Kristen Stewart's Snow is apparently Joan of Arc and Charlize is just, well, awesome. I can't say that I'm clamoring to see Mirror Mirror (and I guess I'm not the only one from looks of the box office. The trailers make it look so bad, right? But, I shouldn't form an opinion until I've seen it. After all the lesson of Snow White is to not judge a book by its cover. Wait, that's Beauty and the Beast. What's the theme for Snow White? When in trouble, seek out dwarves?), but the major point of interest is definitely the elaborate costumes created by Oscar-winning costume designer, Eiko Ishioka (Bram Stoker's Dracula). Over at Movieline, there is a great photo gallery of the costumes, so you can take in the insanity wonders of people with swans and boats on their heads.

Julia Roberts is such a modern, contemporary actress that it's not very often that we see her in such a stylized, fanciful way. And while her real-life style is less defined than some other stars, she's definitely brought some iconic styles to the big-screen. In celebration of her outlandish gowns in Mirror Mirror, I thought it would fun to look back at some of Julia's looks from past movies. And I think we all know what the first one is gonna be:
Pretty Woman (1990)

This post was really just an excuse to post pictures of Julia's amazing costumes in Pretty Woman. If anyone tells you that they don't like this movie, call them out for the dirty liar that they are. It is impossible to resist Julia in this film. Just try not to stop when you see it playing on basic cable (which is at least once a day). In what other movie can you see Julia Roberts in both a blonde wig with vinyl thigh-high boots and an elegant red gown with opera length gloves–and make both looks work. This movie is one of the best fashion movies of all time (just in case you were wondering, I would include Funny Face, Clueless, and The Devil Wears Prada on that list as well). A time capsule of what was considered chic and modern at that moment. While the clothes may look dated now, there's no denying the elegance of the polka dot dress worn to the polo match or the black lace cocktail dress. Like a modern day Eliza Doolittle, Julia's Vivian Ward is transformed into a lady through her clothes. And who doesn't love a shopping movie-montage? 

Hook, Erin Brockovich, and more after the jump

Hook (1991)

While hardly a film that most would think of when they think of Julia Roberts, I thought it only fitting to revisit her first foray into fantasy with her Tinker Bell looks. (Also -fun fact- Phil Collins, the real-life father to Julia's Snow White, Lily Collins, has a brief role as a detective in the film. And it's also Gwyneth Paltrow's film debut!) It wasn't until I was older that I discovered that people aren't very fond of this movie. I loved it when I was a kid. I haven't watched it recently, so maybe I should just let it live in my memory. But, Julia sporting a pixie cut (how literal) and a tattered brown ensemble looks very much the part of the gamine. But, my favorite part was when she briefly wears a glittery white dress (that I guess she borrowed from Jennifer Connolly in Labyrinth).

Erin Brockovich (2000)

"They're called boobs, Ed." And with the help of some push-up bras, they were all on display in the role that won Julia her Best Actress Oscar. Armed with mini skirts and halter tops, it was a look that we weren't accustomed to seeing on the star. Not since Vivian in Pretty Woman had a look so defined one of Julia's characters. And for an actress that is very good at playing herself, it really helped to bring about more of a transformation. The one complaint that the real Erin Brochovich had was that the skirts weren't short enough. 
Charlie Wilson's War (2007)

Yeah, I don't remember much about this movie either (Philip Seymour Hoffman somehow got an Oscar nomination for it. I wasn't even aware that Mike Nichols directed it until I looked it up on IMDB), but the most memorable thing is by far Julia's look. I could have included looks from her more memorable roles like My Best Friend's Wedding, Notting Hill, or Closer but, honestly, do you remember much about what she looked like in those movies? And do any of them have Julia with a big, curly, blonde wig that vaguely resembles a poodle? This is the first time, as a 80s Texan socialite, that she's really played a larger-than-life character with such an over-the-top look. I mean, just look at those pictures. Amazing.

Mirror Mirror (2012)

Apparently Julia suffered for her beauty in this film. The wedding dress she wore was 8 feet wide and weighed 60 pounds. She said on E! News that on set, her three children and husband were able to fit under the skirt. But, there's no denying the beauty and attention to detail in those costumes. She is wearing works of art that I have a feeling will be remembered come Oscar time. And where else but through the magic of movies do we get to see such amazing clothes on display?

What's your favorite Julia look? Is there one you think I should have mentioned? 

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