Monday, 16 January 2012

So Statuesque

Last night, I had the good fortune while flicking channels to stumble across a favourite film of mine: "To Wong Foo, Thanks For Everything, Julie Newmar". When I first heard about this film, the premise sounded too ridiculous to bother with. I mean, Wesley Snipes, Patrick Swayze and John Leguizamo as drag queens... it should never have worked. But it did so much more than simply work, it shone! This bizarrely wonderful road trip comedy has so many amazing fashion moments, it fills me with glee. The film opens with a little Salt n Pepa, banging out "I am the Body Beautiful", accompanied by Swayze and Snipes getting dolled up. You haven't gotten dressed up for a night out until you've done it slinking about to this song! Most. Fun. Ever.

This film celebrates freedom in so many ways, it provides enough material for a dissertation. The costumes are entirely influenced by this. Extravagant and exuberant, they contrast beautifully with the dusty, sleepy town our three heroines find themselves stranded in. Each character has a distinct style to fit their role. Swayze's character plays on classic elegance; plenty of skirt suits and just about as proper and ladylike as a drag queen gets.

Leguizamo's character is younger, less jaded with life, but as a result lacking experience. I actually find myself really enjoying her style, young, flirty, plenty of denim! I love the idea of flouncing about in a little white nightie as in the image below, but I'm realistically more of a flannel pyjamas type.

Wesley Snipes cuts an impressive figure as a lady, Ms. Noxeema Jackson sports some impressive maxi dresses, and some delightful nineties prints, two things I'm loving right now.

Before I blather all night about all the great quotes and scenes in this film, I'll cut myself off, and simply do a countdown of my top 3 "To Wong Foo, Thanks For Everything, Julie Newmar" fashion moments.

3. Noxeema and Vita (Swayze) explaining the difference between drag queen, and "little Latin boy in a dress" to Chi Chi (Leguizamo).

2. Vita teaching a lovesick protege to copy the moves of Miss Anne Baxter in "The Ten Commandments", in order to catch the eye of a boy.

1. Noxeema reduced to speechlessness when finding a cache of unsold Sixties clothing in the back of the otherwise drab clothes shop.

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