Marie Antoinette Online Forum
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Costume in the 1938 film compared to the 2006 remake
http://forum.marie-antoinette.org/viewtopic.php?f=15&t=1636
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Author:  laurahaines [ Sun Jun 07, 2009 5:05 pm ]
Post subject:  Costume in the 1938 film compared to the 2006 remake

Hello all,
I'm currently compiling a research studyfor my A level Media Studies course based on representations of women through costume within Period Drama films. As I'm sure you will all love to hear, I am primarily focusing my study on a comparison between the two representations of Marie Antoinette ( the 1938 film and the 2006 version) :biggrin:

I came accross this site whilst doing some research and have found your debates on both films highly insightful for my research study.
I was wondering if it would be possible for you guys to comment on how you feel the representation of the french queen is different in both films by the way she has been dressed. Do you all feel like I do that becuase of the modern take on her costume in Coppola's version that you are less likely to see the rest of the film as historically accurate??

Many Thanks :mrgreen:

Author:  victoire [ Sun Jun 14, 2009 2:28 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Costume in the 1938 film compared to the 2006 remake

I feel that the costumes in the Coppola version often look more period than the ones in the 1938 version, particularly in the fabrics used and the applied decoration. It's the rock music and the celebrity party atmosphere of the coppola movie that make it seem more anachronistic to me. (But perhaps that's what Coppola was trying to do.) The 1938 movie costumes are themselves flavored by 1930s fashion sensibilities, sometimes using lame, sequins, etc. (If you haven't already looked at it, you might be interested in "Hollywood and History," a book edited by Edward Maeder.) They are romanticized and glamorized versions of 18th century costume, but I think they fit in well with the older film's somewhat romanticized depiction of the queen.

I am quite fond of the 1938 film, both for its dramatic impact, and for the costumes, which I find imaginative and quite beautiful. :)

Author:  laurahaines [ Sun Jun 14, 2009 5:34 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Costume in the 1938 film compared to the 2006 remake

thanks for this and the book recommendation; I already have that one but it is good to know that others deem it to be a good book on the subject :D

Author:  victoire [ Mon Jun 15, 2009 1:05 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Costume in the 1938 film compared to the 2006 remake

One thing I find interesting about the 1938 movie is that it shows little interest in the more casual, English influenced dress that MA embraced in the 1780s. Norma Shearer is almost always shown in very lush, glamorous gowns (except of course, when she is imprisoned and awaiting her execution). I guess, as the Maeder book suggests, this was done to appeal to glamor-hungry, Depression era moviegoers.

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