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In Praise Of Realistic Movie Wardrobes: “The Town”

Have you seen “The Town” yet? I loved it so much that I saw it once, waited a day, and saw it again. “The Town” was a hugely male-dominated movie, so one thing that really impressed me was the main female character’s cute-but-realistic wardrobe.

Why is a hapless biology student wearing a hot pink Dolce & Gabbana slip dress to her internship?

Rebecca Hall plays Claire, a woman in her late 20s/early 30s who just moved to Boston and is working as a bank manager. She wears exactly the kind of clothes that many of my friends, some of whom are working as young professionals in Boston, wear. She looks put-together in dark denim jeans, boots, and scarves on the weekends, and a little more dressed up for work and dates. She rocks Converse sneakers and puffer vests while working in the garden. There’s one scene where she’s folding her laundry, notices blood on the collar of one of her work shirts, and starts to cry. The camera catches a glimpse of the shirt’s Banana Republic tag, and as I too tried not to tear up, I couldn’t help but think, “Claire would wear a Banana Republic blouse! Perfect!”

Usually the wardrobes of young female movie characters distract me in a bad way. I’m trying to focus on the plot but can’t help thinking, “

Why is a hapless biology student wearing a hot pink Dolce & Gabbana slip dress to her internship?

” or “How can a nomadic hip-hop dancer afford so many Adidas track jackets?” Sometimes we go into movies wanting to be distracted by crazy costumes (“Sex and the City,” I’m looking at you), but usually I like to see characters — especially in realistic movies — dress the way they actually would in real life.

How about you? Do you prefer practical costume design or can you suspend disbelief enough to appreciate the hot pink D&G slip dress?

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