Movie

The Great Beauty

The Great Beauty - Rich lady's apartment where everything is expensive, but there is little of it.

The Great Beauty - Rich lady's apartment where everything is expensive, but there is little of it.

I know The Great Beauty (2013) is supposed to be a really good movie, but.........  I didn't enjoy it.  

However, I do like this tile floor.  The pattern is the right balance of geometric and floral.  The tiles themselves have slight color disparities, meaning they are either old or a vintage style.  There is a dark band around the base of the walls, which frames the pattern and highlights the scale of the room.

My new favorite sofa

The French Lieutenant's Woman (1981) - Home of a successful actor whose decor is.......a little dated.

The French Lieutenant's Woman (1981) - Home of a successful actor whose decor is.......a little dated.

In The French Lieutenant's Woman, Jeremy Irons plays a film actor who throws a cast party at his house.  After a number of scenes where people compliment his fine home, the party comes to an end, and he decides to have a think on one of the most balls-out 80's sofas I have ever seen.  

Please appreciate it's droopy quality.  It's as if the sofa is covered with an enormous throw blanket, tucked in around the cushions...and yet, the arm seems to have a ribbed seam. 

UPDATE:  I think the arms of the sofa have a separate fabric cap on them.  I haven't seen that product in years.  My grandma had a couch with arms caps and I used to put them on my head as if I was a nun.  If only she had this couch because I would have been one psychedelic nun.  

Something's Got to Give

Something's Got to Give (1962) - Dean Martin's mid-century home.  It's full of beds, but he won't take his new wife, Cyd Charisse, to bone town.   

Something's Got to Give (1962) - Dean Martin's mid-century home.  It's full of beds, but he won't take his new wife, Cyd Charisse, to bone town.   

I just watched Something's Got to Give, Marilyn Monroe's last (partial) film, and she is more stunning than ever.  I was going to make a joke about how she is not as stunning as that daybed, but that would be lame because there is Marilyn, and then everything else.  

If you want to get the look, West Elm has a remarkably similar model.  

Widow Daybed $550

Widow Daybed $550

Dean Martin stops by a hotel, dotted with Mid-Century Sunshades.  I love these, and I don't know why they aren't more readily available.  Design Within Reach sells one, but it is $1000 and only comes in white (two things that make no sense), and there are a few more options at inmod (but still so overpriced).  

I just don't get why this product doesn't have a version on Overstock or Amazon?  The construction seems fairly standard, and it does not use any more material than other $200 patio umbrella's on discount sites.  Someone make this please.

Now that's what I call well designed.

Now that's what I call well designed.

Wood Paneling

Sleeping Beauty (2011) - A mysteriously high-end brothel bedroom

Sleeping Beauty (2011) - A mysteriously high-end brothel bedroom

GROSS!!!

GROSS!!!

I watched Sleeping Beauty (2011) over the weekend and enjoyed it, although it is pretty provocative, so I'm not recommending it.  Although, look how gorgeous that wood paneling is.  

Wood paneling gets a bad rap because it is most closely associated with room from the 70's called "dens" or "rec rooms".  Yellow knotty pine is not the worst atrocity of the 70's, but people are still battling it.  

I think the reason the paneling in Sleeping Beauty works is because it is neither yellow (it is more of a walnut color) and does not have knots (just a lovely grain).  As long as you stay away from those two things, there is a lot of wiggle room.  

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That Awkward Casting

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I finally got around to watching That Awkward Moment, and it was horrendous.  The film's largest issue, is that everyone is cast a decade younger than they should be.  Zack Efron, and the rest of this ensemble, look like they could pass for high schoolers in a teen soap, but we are meant to believe they are extremely successful adults (Advertising Executives, Doctor, etc).  They live in a city, which I assume is New York, have gigantic apartments, drink expensive cocktails, and talk about their friend's divorce.  

oh, come on!

oh, come on!

In the above picture, a womanizing-man-child goes over a nice girl's apartment, but her apartment looks like this!  It is freaking huge (for anywhere, but especially for NYC).  It's overly "adult".  I loved it not only for how ludicrous it is, but because if had an expensive apartment in New York, and then a sitcom created a sound stage version of it for CBS, it would look just like this.  The faux malachite lamps are what sealed the deal.

The Gorgeous/Awful Week

I just watched The Longest Week, and it was such beautiful trash.  I cannot recommend it, unless want to make your eyes happy and your brain hurt.  

The story is about wealthy attractive aimless Manhattan-its who do not understand the value of a dollar.  Although the plot centers around Jason Bateman getting disinherited, the filmmaker is much more concerned with demonstrating that french culture is cool and he is a big fan of Wes Anderson.  

This film is so comically out of touch, that it even romanticizes smoking cigarettes (something that no film has been able to get away with in a decade).  

That being said, let me reiterate that every set and every shot is beautiful.  Bateman lives in his family's fancy hotel.  Right off the bat, I can see that we love the same things.  

Prominent pictures of french royalty:

The Longest Week - Why hello, Napoleon. 

The Longest Week - Why hello, Napoleon. 

Emma's apartment - I am all about Louis XIV because of those fine legs.

Emma's apartment - I am all about Louis XIV because of those fine legs.

Exotic taxidermy:

The Longest Week - Confronting white peacocks = dream come true.  The only thing that would make this better was if the dog was stuffed too (I'm not into dogs).

The Longest Week - Confronting white peacocks = dream come true.  The only thing that would make this better was if the dog was stuffed too (I'm not into dogs).

Background on Emma's phone - I might not be able to have a Unicorn face off in real life, but I make a point of look at one every day.  

Background on Emma's phone - I might not be able to have a Unicorn face off in real life, but I make a point of look at one every day.  

The running design element that stood out for me was the use of textured white walls through out the film.  

In the Napoleon room the walls have engaged columns and extensive molding details. 

Most of the other spaces have white painted brick walls or white painted paneling.  

The Longest Week - A conceptual artists spars loft.  GET A RUG!

The Longest Week - A conceptual artists spars loft.  GET A RUG!

The Longest Week - Oh what shall I do with all my vintage luggage! 

The Longest Week - Oh what shall I do with all my vintage luggage! 

The Longest Week - New Years Resolution: Hang Audubon prints. 

The Longest Week - New Years Resolution: Hang Audubon prints. 

The Longest Week -  A Napoleon in every room, I say!

The Longest Week -  A Napoleon in every room, I say!

Halt! I have seen that before.

Halt and Catch Fire: Season 1, Episode 1 - Conference room in a tech company from back in the day.  

Halt and Catch Fire: Season 1, Episode 1 - Conference room in a tech company from back in the day.  

I watched the first episode of Halt and Catch Fire, and was pleasantly surprised.  There are some great, smart-mouthed, characters, and dated computer tech.  The last scene takes place in a conference room that looks mighty familiar.  

   Dr. Strangelove (1964) - Director: Stanley Kubrick, Production Designer: Ken Adam

 

Dr. Strangelove (1964) - Director: Stanley Kubrick, Production Designer: Ken Adam

Dr. Strangelove

Dr. Strangelove

It all started with the War Room in Dr. Strangelove.  Someone thought of hanging a drop-down, over-sized light fixture above a conference table, and the rest was history.  

This style of lighting will be forever linked with serious decision making.  When someone sits under these lights, their face is illuminated, and the rest fades away.  It is a place for a Master-of-the-Universe to share their thoughts. 

John Oliver's Last Week Tonight recently brought our attention to the design of the FIFA board room, which was directly modeled after Dr. Strangelove.  He jokes that the people who run FIFA are pretty much evil overlords, and their decor does nothing to disguise that.   

FIFA

FIFA

The Hero - A place for heros to "beast" it

The Hero - A place for heros to "beast" it

I also had the great privilege to work on the TNT show, The Hero, where the Production Designer, Stuart Frossell, created his very own War Room (I picked out those horrendous modern sculptures, per the producer's request).  

Me and The Rock!

Me and The Rock!