Film

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Buttoned-Down Beatnik: Ginsberg Biopic “Howl” Gets Sept. Release

A few months ago I heard about the Allen Ginsberg biopic “Howl,” and asked the production company if there were any upcoming screenings. There weren’t, as the film had yet to find a distributor. It’s got one now, and is scheduled for release on September 24. The film focuses on the poet’s 1957 obscenity trial


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Mission Accomplished: Robert Culp, 1930-2010

Last week saw the passing of actor Robert Culp, who starred in the ’60s TV show “I Spy.” Last year Ivy-Style contributor Zachary DeLuca wrote a fine tribute to the show, in which Culp plays a former tennis star turned secret agent generously costumed in natural-shouldered suits and buttondown collars. The post can be found


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The Preppy Beatnik

As a follow-up to our previous post on the bohemian in the Brooks Brothers suit, here’s cheers to Charlie Dalton, aka Nuwanda, the rebellious rich kid in “Dead Poets Society” who has a brief affair with a saxophone and beret. I wonder whatever became of Charlie. — CC


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Secrets of Sprezzatura: The Messed-Up Shirt Collar

Do your outfits look stiff and contrived? Do you have a tendency to wear matching pants and saddle shoes? What you need is a dash of sprezzatura — deliberately calculated nonchalance — to give yourself a more devil-may-care, deshabille appearance. Here’s a quick fix in three easy steps: 1) When you launder an oxford-cloth buttondown,


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GI Bill: Mr. Thomas and His Postwar Khakis

Bruce Boyer herein presents his first piece for Ivy-Style, an interview with Bill Thomas of Bill’s Khakis. Khakis and jeans are the iconic American work pants, both having been around for over a century but coming into global status after World War II. The democratizing effect of these trousers — everyone from top CEOs and


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Disco Revival: Whit Stillman on Life and Film

Whit Stillman’s 1998 film “The Last Days of Disco” was released this week, the last of his three films to make it to DVD. Several articles and interviews have hit the web as a result. Time Out New York has a short interview with Stillman, in which he talks about why he hasn’t made a


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Lemmon-tations of a Company Man

Our Jack Lemmon series concludes with a look at 1964’s “Good Neighbor Sam,” in which Lemmon plays a wholesome family man who works in San Francisco at — what else? — an advertising agency. He commutes over the Golden Gate Bridge from Marin County, which I too did for a while. Did you know the


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Bow Ties and Bongos

Our Jack Lemmon tribute continues with a look at two films in which he plays supporting roles. In 1958’s “Bell, Book and Candle,” Lemmon stars as a warlock who plays bongos with a suit-clad jazz combo in a Greenwich Village beatnik club. Kim Novak is the female lead in one of the sexiest roles ever


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Cocktails For Two

Our Jack Lemmon movie marathon commences with a retraction. When I did a post on the 50th anniversary of “Breakfast at Tiffany’s,” I wrote that director Blake Edwards never again reached such heights. That may be true, but he certainly reached greater depths. I’d always avoided “Days of Wine and Roses,” as I just never


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When LIFE Gives You Lemmons

This is the first in a series of posts on actor Jack Lemmon, which will include movie recommendations and sartorial screen shots. But we’ll start things off with a few photos from the LIFE Magazine archives.


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Tea and Sympathy, 1956

“Tea and Sympathy” was mentioned recently in one of the articles reprinted from Ivy Magazine. It’s also on the reading list featured in the “Official Preppy Handbook.” I figured it was time to check it out. Written by Robert Anderson for the stage, “Tea and Sympathy” was adapted for the screen in 1956 with Vincente


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Go Daddy-O: Happy Father’s Day from Ivy-Style

This Father’s Day, why not do something really classic and take your cue from the TV show “My Three Sons”? Simply put on your finest suits and share an exciting father-son bicycle ride. It’s certainly more original than playing catch in the backyard. Airing from 1960-1972, “My Three Sons” centered around a single father raising


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Spycatcher

Mid-century TV shows such as Dragnet, Bewitched and My Three Sons are rich in sartorial eye candy. But rarely does a show provide the perfect combination of great writing, great acting, and great tailoring. Get Smart is often lauded in this regard, but it is really little more than slapstick. Those seeking a more serious program for


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An Affair To Forget

In the prep-school film “Rushmore,” an unusual love triangle develops when a high school student and a successful businessman both attempt to win the attention of a widowed schoolteacher. The uneven match between the teen and wealthy industrialist provides much of “Rushmore’s” humor and angst. “An American Affair,” a new film directed by William Sten


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Poison Ivy League

See these Ivy frat boys? Elvis uses his fists to wipe the smug looks off their faces. After seeming to romanticize fraternity life in our last post, we thought we’d balance the scales by romanticizing fraternity jerks who get punched out by a greaser from the wrong side of the tracks. Such a greaser is


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Holly and the Ivy

Although the film version of “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” was made in 1961, author Truman Capote created heroine Holly Golightly in 1958, whereupon she took her place alongside Odette de Crecy, Suzie Wong and Fanny Hill in the long line of literary lady escorts. Holly’s 50th anniversary has been celebrated in various media outlets, including The


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Grant Writing

“People Will Talk,” one of Cary Grant’s lesser known movies, boasts some interesting outfits for the sartorial historicist. In order to portray a medical professor at a small Midwestern college in 1951, Grant was costumed in one double-breasted suit, and three suits and jackets that feature a 3/2 roll, but still have the overall cut


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Running Man

One of the good things about living in LA (I’ve forgotten the others) is the chance to see movies before anyone else does. To wit, several weeks ago, while on assignment for the Rugby blog, I took in a screening of “The Express,” a biopic about Ernie Davis, star running back for Syracuse University from