April 09, 2015

A Most Stylish Year: Armani for Jessica Chastain

A Most Violent Year is a 2014 film set in New York City of 1981, recounting a critical period in the lives of Abel Morales (Oscar Isaac) and his wife Anna (Jessica Chastain).

Morales, who is ambitious but essentially an honest man, owns a heating oil company which is being ambushed by an unseen enemy. His plans to purchase prime property on the East River require huge loans. To add to Abel's problems, the Assistant District Attorney suspects Morales of having ties to organized crime and is stacking up charges against him. 

Costuming for director J.C. Chandor's period piece is credited to Kasia Walicka-Maimone, but the wardrobe of the upwardly mobile Anna Morales was designed by master tailor and couturier Giorgio Armani.

Above and below:  Posters for the movie, showing Abel and Anna Morales at their early 1980s stylish best.

Giorgio Armani's wardrobe for Jessica Chastain on display:

Below:  Abel and Anna share an embrace as they move into a plush new home. Jessica Chastain wears Giorgio Armani's intricately seamed  leather jacket with matching belt, oversize purse and high boots. The outfit is also shown in the display photo above.

The Morales' daughter's Birthday celebration is interrupted by an unexpected visit from the Assistant District Attorney (David Oyelowo) who has a warrant to search their new mansion.  Anna asks him to wait until she has sent home the young guests with their goodie bags.

Above and below:  Anna wears Giorgio Armani's deep V-necked wrap dress with a cascading hemline, accessorized by a long, pearl-studded chain. Abel makes the male fashion of turtleneck sweater look downright smart and sexy.

Below:  A furious Anna shows her husband the loaded revolver she discovered her young daughter wielding. Her tailored satin shirt is decorated with a chain of gold and mother of pearl loops.

In a perfect crisp white shirt and no style slouch himself, Abel comforts Anna. Another view of her satin shirt, chain necklace with matching gold earrings and hairband.

Above and below:  Side view of Abel in camel hair coat.  Anna wears the de rigeur white satin shirt, shoulder bag and gorgeous black onyx beaded pendant. 

Coral padded shoulder (an '80s 'must') shirt and blue jeans on the lovely Jessica Chastain.  Oscar Isaac's charcoal grey suit is worn with a black turtleneck sweater. Just your average upwardly mobile couple relaxing...

Above: Anna studies the finances in a sleeveless satiny blouse knotted high on the neck.  The apparatus under her right hand is called an "adding machine".

Above: So 1981 haute, it hurts--Anna dressed to impress (and snag that big loan) in olive brocade, padded shoulder jacket, plunging, button-front bustier and long skirt--nicely finished off with a braided tie belt.

Above:  David Oyelowo, wearing strictly-on-business dark charcoal, and Jessica Chastain chat. Anna's white Armani maxi-coat is so stunningly crafted you cannot take your eyes away when she sports it onscreen.

Filmed on location in New York City, the actors needed warm outerwear. Ms. Chastain's wide lapelled, belted and buckled pure white Armani coat is the stuff of legend. Oscar Isaac's crisply tailored camel coat is more subdued but equal in sartorial splendor.

This fascinating, noir-ish film is beautifully shot in subdued hues and on location in parts of the Big Apple that still resemble the 1980s--when walls and subways were covered by graffiti.
A Most Violent Year was released on DVD April 7, 2015.
I give it the Crème de la Crème thumbs up.

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