Jeremy Langmead’s excellently revamped Esquire Magazine is always a pleasure to flick through. Like a more mainstream Monocle, it mixes fashion, music and film with business and current affairs. “The magazine for men who mean business” as they call it themselves.
The October issue kindly enough pinpoints the 20 most stylish films for us. A few conclusions can be drawn. The most stylish decade, according to this compliation, is the 1960’s, racking up six notches out of the 20. And it’s no surprise that out the six, two belonged to Steve McQueen: Bullit and The Thomas Croewn Affair. Sean Connery’s James Bond in Dr No is also celebrated.
In pole position we find the 70’s, which is spearheaded by a mean-looking Robert De Niro in Taxi Driver. A wise choice, which can also be said about the Ralph Lauren designed The Great Gatsby. David Bowie and The Man Who Sold The World, with Bowie wearing a Fedora hat that makes him look like a camp Mafioso, also sneaks in.
The 50’s and 1980’s share the third place with three films each. And, as far as the 80’s goes, it can’t be much more stylish than an Armani clad Richard Gere in American Gigolo, can it? Definitively Gere and Armani at their best – both are now best forgotten memories. The Eighties also feature Mickey Rourke, who is not known for his style, and Michael Douglas in Wall Street (Douglas is even less known for his style. He’s known for shagging a lady half his age. Saying that, I liked his glasses in Falling Down).
Noteworthy in the 50’s is James Dean in Rebel Without a Cause and Cary Grant’s To Catch a Thief. Grant isn’t the only old school Hollywood star in Esquire though – Fred Astaire reps the 30’s in Dancing Lady.
No films from the Nougthies made the list but three from the 90’s did. An unlikely style icon is Jude Law but I suppose he looked decent in The Talented Mr Ripley. Also Ralph Fiennes, in The English Patient, is rescued by the films good outfits, rather than his own style credentials.
Lastly they mention Reservoir Dogs. Now, Tarantino’s film is made in a very stylish way and the monochrome suits on all the bad guys do look good. But I think it’s a bit unfair by Esquire to say that Michael Madsen’s suit is what kick-started Hedi Slimane at Dior Homme. To me, it looks like Mr Pink is wearing a Next suit...