Monday, 28 January 2008

Attend the tale...

Hello blogosphere,

Brace yourself for cliche albeit one well meant: going to the movies used to be an event. When there was no internet, TV or glossy multi-narrative strand based American crime dramas, people used to look most often to the Picturehouse for their Big Night Out.

Yes, yes. I know you know this. You're very smart. I was just writing preamble - it can't all be gold! Damn your black hearts. Anyway, my point (and I do have one) is that on the occasions I can afford the shocking British multiplex/independent smugfest cinema prices (seriously, what's the point of being highbrow if it's not dirt cheap? Those Philip Seymour Hoffman films aren't going to watch themselves) I always dress up. Sometimes I theme it, cause y'know, with all my anger issues, I rarely get invited to fancy dress parties. Also, I think it's genuinely cheering to make all outings, even fairly commonplace ones, little events in themselves.

Two days ago I went to see Sweeney Todd.

Nice poster. Johnny Depp IS Sweeney Todd. Our focus IS his crotch. Anywhoo, I am a huge musical theatre nut and have an especial squidgy spot for Sondheim so I was almost foaming at mouth with excitement to see this particular motion picture Event. Did I block out out the fact that Tim Burton cast non-singers in two of the most difficult musical theatre roles. Yes. Yes I did. I blocked hard. It wasn't too difficult because at least ol' reliable Burton had the good sense to cast Helena Bonham Carter, whom I love very tenderly.

Yes indeed, despite her pipey- girly no power singing, I love her and her crazed fashion sense/hair. Her Sweeney costumes (designed by the ever-present Colleen Atwood) and general off-duty aceness were the inspiration for my cinema-goin' outfit.

Behold my mood boards o' inspiration:

Colleen Atwood's costume sketches

Scruffy hair, black eyes, mismatching Victoriana and eccentric/psychotic attitude with underlying vulnerability. 'kay:

Chiffon sleeved velvet dress: early 90s Laura Ashley, filched from mum
Ratty wool hoodie: filched from sister
Dirty yellow rose top: New Look
Purple tights: M&S
Boots: Nine West
Kitsch heart ring (just seen): Gift from my beloved co-blogger Tor

I tried not to be too costumey so it was goth-lite all the way. I didn't enjoy the movie - I firmly believe that a musical should be populated by actors who can actually sing the material. Call me a snob, but I need my moment of transcendence and Johnny Depp's growlly puppy rock voice, close miked and pitch corrected as it was, is no substitute for the fury and richness of George Hearn, Michael Cerveris or Len Cariou. I'm a broadway girl and I like a little belt.

Scene from the 2007 Broadway revival of Sweeney Tood w/ Michael Ceveris (left) & blessed Patti Lupone (centre,top). See lovely Wendy's blog for more Patti-fied 70s fashion goodness.

Wow. Our last two posts were on musical theatre and Disney. Maybe this is why we're not invited to frickin' Chanel. We have got to get cool somehow.

Maybe I'll take up smoking....that's still cool, right?



Susie Bubble said...

I posted about Sailor Moon and Disney and managed to get invited to Chanel...... whudda thunk it?

I'm hearing many a mix thing about Johnny Depp's singing... I'm def going to see it purely for my undying love for Helena Bonham Carter though...

Becky said...

Yeah...I like Johnny Depp as much as the next gal, but his singing isn't up to that mighty score. HBC is worth everyone's undying love however. She's a total icon of 'yeh whatever' fashion and I love her for that. Whatever happened to her knickerbocker business that was advertised in The Times?

You're allowed to post about Sailor Moon and stuff. You make it work. I believe it is because you have magic in your fringe and typing fingertips. Karl loves your fringe - he told me once over one of our bimonthly KFC suppers.

everybodysaysdont said...

I am a HUGE sondheim fan too. I have heard parts of the soundtrack but not seen the film yet. I can't wait to see it. I think Alan Rickman sounds fantastic from what I've heard. I will miss big "musical belting" singing in the film, but as Sondheim said in a interview the film is a different medium (He said words to that effect, that's not a direct quote!)

The film is not to replace live theatre I guess....

There's a interview at

plus there's a piece on the film on radio 4's "the film programme" listen again at

WendyB said...

Hellooooooooo Patti! said...

Wow.. excellent dear, great post!! there is so much information on this blog keep posting good information like this so that I can come back every day for some new info...
High Fashion Designer
Thanks for sharing...

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