As always, The Academy Awards ceremony this year will be a panoply of gratuitous red-carpet glitz. Honestly, it's not our bag. The movies up for little gold statues this year, however, come packed with a healthy dose of positively wearable style. Here are the winners for our own Academy of Moving Picture Arts and Stylists.
Best Century-Spanning Costume Design—The Curious Case of Benjamin Button: Already nominated for Best Costume Design (and just about everything else) T.C.C.O.B.B. gets the nod for mixing styles from the '20s, '30s, '40s, '50s, '60s, and beyond with class and true attention to historical veracity. Plus, Cate Blanchette has never looked better than she does in those long, black gowns.
Best Original Grungy Willamsburg Look—Milk: Dirty hipsters long before there were dirty hipsters, the '70s equal-rights activists of Milk don wild facial hair, corduroy jackets, and tight, tight T-shirts. Watch for Emile Hirsch's amazing transformation into an early ancestor of Dov Charney.
The Irving Thalberg Award for Lifetime Achievement in Spandex—The Wrestler: Mickey Rourke is being praised, and probably earning a Best Actor Award, for his warts-and-all portrayal of Randy "The Ram" Robinson. We, however, give all the credit to his tights, which must have suffered greatly throughout the filming of those sweaty, painful scenes in the ring.
Best Performance by a Supporting Actor in Fur—The Baader-Meinhof Komplex: Nominated for Best Foreign Film, this German historical drama recounting the exploits of the infamous ultra-left-wing terrorist group didn't hold back on the details—Euro trench coats, smart haircuts, and tall boots—but the bravest moment came courtesy of Moritz Bleibtreu, who rocked a gray fur coat along with a pair of Chucks while portraying Andreas Baader.
Best Performance by a Purple Suit—The Dark Knight: Yes, we can't believe it's been a year since Heath Ledger died either, and we're happy to see him represented in the Best Supporting Actor category for his terrifying performance as the Joker. But it was that purple-and-green Paul-Smith-gone-to-seed get-up that really scared us shitless.
Best Adapted Early '60s Style—Revolutionary Road: The Post-War commuter culture wasn't all slim-fitted Mad Men and housewives in $1,000 dresses, y'know. In this sad story, Leo DiCaprio's baggy suits and Kate Winslet's pastel house dresses underline their disassociation with the world around them—and look damn good too.