Thursday, July 20, 2006

Is it truly 'Miami Vice' without a white suit?

Maggie says:
Am I the only one who's been under the impression that the new 'Miami Vice' movie would be set back in the glory days of the '80s? I've been dying to see Colin Farrell in loafers and Jamie Foxx in pastel. But alas... turns out this 'remake' is set in modern-day Miami. Which begs the question... who cares? Why not simply make a new movie rather than rely on Crockett and Tubbs to pull off a plot that contains none of their fashion sense?

Fortunately the New York Times is feeling my pain here about the serious lack of style in this upcoming flick. For those of us not satisfied by Crockett's sleazy mustache and Tubbs' goatee (somehow supposed to connote '80s fabulousness), the Times story allows us to momentarily revel in the '80s fashion that mesmerized us far more than Vice plots ever did. It also conveys the historical significance of everyone's favorite decked-out duo:

Although it’s hard now to remember the radical statement these gestures once constituted, before “Miami Vice” few men except bank tellers rolled up their jacket sleeves, and about the only folks who flipped up their blazer collars were the singer George Michael or patrons in some Fort Lauderdale gentlemen-only bar. “It’s the first point in fashion history where you can really show a TV having that influence on fashion,” said Mr. Moore, adding that a two-day growth of beard before “Miami Vice” was a sure sign of a impending bumhood. “ ‘Miami Vice’ made stubble cool,” he said. It has stayed cool far too long, and this is something Mr. Mann should be required to answer for.

When he orchestrated the look of the original show, Mr. Mann was venturing into stylistic territory already staked out by Italian designers, people like Gianni Versace, Gianfranco Ferré or Giorgio Armani, the man generally credited with introducing the world to the unconstructed suit — that is, without padding, a lining or internal stiffening. This might be as good a time as any to amend the old canard about Mr. Armani being the inventor of the floppy suit. It was long a staple of Neapolitan haberdashery, developed by tailors sent to London by wealthy patrons to apprentice on Savile Row. Being superior craftsmen, the tailors absorbed everything there was to know about British cuts and suit construction. Being Neapolitans, they blithely tossed out the window most of the knowledge they had acquired. It is generally too hot in Naples to dress like Bertie Wooster. But it is not too hot in Milan, where Mr. Armani adapted the look before wholesaling it to the world.

“Miami Vice” may also have marked the earliest mainstream appearance of that indestructible cultural chimera, the metrosexual. “As tough as Sonny Crockett was meant to be,” the dude on a boat with a pet alligator named Elvis, “he still had the meticulously groomed scruff on his face and the pastel, linen-y sports jackets,” said Dan Peres, the editor of Details. “That all was certainly a part of the cultural moment that allowed men to embrace their vanity a little more openly.”

It was their big weapons, of course, that gave the “Miami Vice” guys confidence enough to wear girly clothes and to moisturize.

And if Michael Mann's not going to take us back to '80s regalia, it appears the fashion industry will.
In its spring 2006 catalog, International Male offers a selection of suits in pink pastel linen and shirts of semi-sheer embroidered voile that could easily have been swiped from the set of “Miami Vice,” the television show or the film. “It’s a little bit forward and a little bit retro,” said Mr. Mulhall, neatly summing up the whole enterprise.

2 Comments:

Anonymous MANIA by Giorgio Armani said...

Nice suits!!

11:08 AM  
Blogger mjae said...

Couldn't even see this movie for free.

Tried.

Gave it a good 10 minutes.

Left and watched You, Me, & Dupree instead. That's saying something.

Something not good.

Ugh.

9:54 PM  

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