5/23/12

Pop Goes the Jazz Age

SEE | The Great Gatsby 
When readers feel possessive or fiercely passionate about a classic work of fiction, the film adaptation is guaranteed to get people talking. In this case we're talking about the fourth big screen version of F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby. Once the project was green-lit, speculation about who would be cast began. This time Tobey Maguire will play our guide, with Gatsby and Daisy being played by Leonardo DiCaprio and Carey Mulligan. But the most telling announcement was that of who would sit in the director's chair. With Moulin Rouge filmmaker Baz Luhrmann behind the camera, viewers are sure to grasp the overindulgent nature of the wealthy during the jazz age. Enter the film's first trailer. It's flashy and luxurious and filled to the brim with style. Luhrmann's clearly created an alluring and inviting world, but will experiencing it be far better than witnessing the drama between the characters? In this glimpse, the swirling party circuit looks more engrossing than any individual. Viewers will have to wait until Christmas to decide.

READ | Rules of Civility
 In his debut novel, Amor Towles weaves a swift-moving story about a young heroine trying to establish herself in 1930s Manhattan. As she navigates big city life, level-headed Katey has her belief in friendship, love and herself tested. Eager but never naive, the heroine grows more self-assured as the years pass. For fans of both The Devil Wears Prada and Breakfast at Tiffany's, Towles balances the story's glamour with an intriguing sadness surrounding those who are swept up by the scene.

WEAR | 1920s-Inspired
The fashion world has not been immune to pop culture's recent infusion of jazz age references. Designers in Milan and New York have played upon the era's signatures, like drop-waisted silhouettes and art deco patterns. Gucci's Frida Giannini created a collection of decadent flapper dresses for Spring 2012, and the Italian design house (established in 1921) has become the go-to brand for celebrities and pretty young things looking to test drive the trend. Actress Camilla Belle has gravitated toward the look (right, in Gucci), and channeled that same decade for inspiration at this year's Met Ball (left, in Ralph Lauren). This isn't last Halloween's flapper costume. Follow Belle's lead by keeping the hair simple and makeup modern.

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