August 2001
Film Duds : Attack of the Summer Blockbusters

Film Duds : Attack of the Summer Blockbusters

Who you callin’ 7-11?

Jackie Chan (Chief Inspector Lee) and Chris Tucker (LAPD Scene from Rush Hour 2 Detective James Carter) teamed up for the second go ‘round of east meets west crime fighting in “Rush Hour 2,” and while the script offered little new and improved humor, the gags, explosions and suits were bigger, brighter and better. Chris showcased his milk-chocolately skin at every opportunity. First with a wine colored shirt, snazzy tie in orange and wine paisley and a charcoal gray suit complete with vest and burgundy pin stripes. Costume Designer Rita Ryack played up the Asian influence of the setting with richly colored brocade fabrics, prints of flowers and dragons, lots of black with bright red and multi-button waiter jackets. Her choice of accessories, like a rescued chicken in a cage, get high Scene from Rush Hour 2 marks for originality and e-hem, pluckiness. Chris Tucker looked absolutely fabulous macked out in a caramel-colored Versace croc-skin suit with butter cream tie and shirt. Ryack obviously got the Chris Tucker skin tone appreciation award for that ensemble and later, a brown leather jacket and black print shirt. Jackie Chan managed to kick his way out of a few nice suits but his black brocade Versace suit with its three-quarter-length coat stole the show. He also shaved quite a few years off the old age with an open necked shirt and silver chain. Honorable wardrobe mentions go to Asian It-girl of the moment Zhang Ziyi (Hu Li), who played a beautiful villain with her high kicking moves and sweetly innocent face. I’ve often wondered what it would be like to be so slender? Scene from Rush Hour 2 Pants were made for a frame like hers. Her legs, frequently off the ground and upside someone’s head, appeared to start somewhere around her armpits. Roselyn Sanchez (Isabella Molina) showed off her petite curves and a sneaky side as a Secret Service agent under cover in a slick white gown with a sexy slit and white high-heeled sandals. But the fabulous suit award goes to John Lone (Ricky Tan) for his superfine traditional number in a modern, shiny, ice blue fabric. Love that new trend of the pale as milk tie and richly colored jacket. Just points the way to whatever fabulousness is happening north of the neck...

Who’s Afraid of the Big, Bad Ass Ape?

Scene from Planet of the Apes

The summer’s much anticipated redux of classic cinema great “Planet of the Apes” starred Mark Wahlberg (Leo Davidson) and Estella Warren (Daena) among others. And from a fashionista’s view the costumes weren’t the current favorite line of never ending brand name, runway wonders, but there was good stuff there. Wahlberg and Warren only got to wear one costume throughout the movie, more’s the pity, but when you’re built like they are, one’s all you need! Mark’s white space suit fit like a glove and grew progressively dirtier and more ripped as his adventures progressed, Scene from Planet of the Apes offering the viewer tantalizing glimpses of firmly muscled skin and the occasional, manly, Technicolor bruise. It helped that the rips on his suit were almost perfectly symmetrical and reminiscent of that not long defunct military style that was hot on runways just a short fashion March ago. Model turned actress Estella is mostly legs and hair but she does a nice line in pouty pink lips and a deeply cleft desert bikini made of shells and vine a la Raquel Welch. Costume Designer Colleen Atwood, a veteran of film work with Director Tim Burton (Ed Wood and Sleepy Hollow), was able to indulge herself on the apes costumes with plenty of black and brown Scene from Planet of the Apes leather plated body armor decorated with various medals and what not depending on the soldiers station in the army. The aristocrat apes were expensively and uniquely gowned in loose fitted garments in bright, richly colored damask cloth with gold embroidery. Special wardrobe kudos for Helena Bonham Carter (Ari) and her wide legged lounge suit with “human” detailing and brightly colored trim. She also had some interesting wrist action happening with a shiny electric blue net number that reached around the thumb like a charmingly garish manacle.