How Inherent Vice is Changing the World

With Paul Thomas Anderson’s latest tour-de-force in theaters now, a resurgence of turn-of-the-decade 60s/70s fashion is upon us. AMC’s Mad Men brought American 1950/60s fashion back into vogue in 2007, and this year marks the long awaited finale to the series. Along with the end of a fictional, highly influential decade begins a new one. Mark Bridges, Oscar nominated costume designer for Inherent Vice, is leading the pack toward the future of fashion.

Reese Witherspoon’s wavy, A-symmetrical-parted hair and dark blue, white ringer one-piece dress make us do backflips. She hasn’t looked this cute since Legally Blonde. “Penny’s (Witherspoon’s character) navy and white dress was inspired by a pair of vintage shoes I found,” Bridges said.

“I love to use contrasts to play up the idea that a character’s clothing isn’t always who they really are, just how they want the world to see them,” Bridges said about Reese Witherspoon’s costume.

Katherine Waterson’s tic-tac orange crochet dress was the biggest jaw dropper and is sure to make many appearances at music festivals this spring. “Shasta’s crochet dress was an original dress from the period found in an antique mall—a lucky find since most crochet dresses from the period have not survived these last 45 years,” he said. “I dyed it a bit to make the color stronger and more appealing yet still accurate for the period. We had to be very careful handling it, it was such a unique piece.”

In Thomas Pynchon’s novel Shasta (Katherine Waterson’s Character) is described as “looking like she said she’d never look.”

Joaquin Phoenix makes leaps and strides in turtlenecks, the color brown, and denim. The mutton chops may have a hard time finding their way back into the mainstream, unless you are still trying to work the hipster angle.

Joaquin Phoenix as Doc Sportello

“Neil Young iconoclast—scruffy, laid back, a bit frayed and almost accidentally cool,” as the production notes put it. “Many times when I needed an idea for Doc I would look at Neil’s choices during that era and often find a unique period look that was great then and still looks great today,” Bridges said.

Watch the trailer and see more of Mark Bridges costuming genius.

Credit: Warner Bros. Pictures
Blaine  Fuller
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