Mother’s Day is coming up, and for us that means one thing: an excuse to watch a bunch of movies and anoint the most stylish movie moms. (And for that, you’re welcome.)
And we’ll keep our explanation for our approach to this holiday relatively simple. First, we love movies. Second, we love to dissect and analyze the style of movies. And third, moms rule. (Even and/or especially fictional ones.) So sit back, relax, and bask in the glow of genius costume designers and the films they once worked on.
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1. Leigh Anne Tuohy, "The Blind Side"
Leigh Anne Tuohy had no time for nonsense (not in real life, and certainly not while being played by Sandra Bullock in her Academy Award-winning role), which is why we must pay homage to Tuohy’s bold approach to pieces like her dresses, prints and accessories. Did she epitomize suburban chic to the nth degree? Absolutely. But reptile print blouses, white jeans, and oversize jewelry was simply part of her take-charge personality, aligning her with the likes of Fictional Mom Hero™ Tammy Taylor, best represented most recently by Amy Schumer (who are we kidding).
2. Wendy Torrence, "The Shining"
Shelley Duvall in "The Shining" embodies two things: 1) a mother who will do anything to protect her child from Jack Nicholson’s wrath, and 2) early-'80s normcore (bless us everyone). Epitomized by her overalls, turtlenecks, and oversize jumper-dress, Torrence (and her character’s costume designers) helped usher in the more androgynous aesthetic of the turn-of-the-decade (which would eventually go even further into the mid-'80s with an onslaught of suits and shoulder pads).
3. Maria Von Trapp, "The Sound of Music"
We know that Maria Von Trapp was first a nanny and then a stepmom but lest we forget it was Dame Julie Andrews’ character who introduced her seven children to clothing made from drapes before catching the Captain’s eye in a simple, light blue printed sundress. (Which totally looks more mid-'60s than it does 1930s, but let’s just let that be.) Girlfriend also underwent a style evolution from a dress so bad "the poor didn’t want it" (I thought it was fine, but sure) to era-appropriate business suits, cementing her status as a total boss. Even though we’re all aware that the Baroness was a true queen and was treated pretty badly.
4. Annie Paradis, "The First Wives Club"
Thanks to her role in The First Wives Club, Diane Keaton could essentially dress like Diane Keaton -- all while playing a character whose husband is a total garbage-person (to the point where even their daughter is disappointed in him). What does that mean? Keaton-familiar blazers, turtlenecks, and pearls, cementing her character (and self) as master of androgynous fashion. Though I like to think that in real life, Diane Keaton wouldn’t have even talked to her fictional husband in the first place.
5. Peg Boggs, "Edward Scissorhands"
Try not to tear up when you think of beautiful, gentle Dianne Wiest (as Peg Boggs), tending to Edward Scissorhands in the wake of rumours, gossip, bullying and eventually scandal. (Right? It’s heartbreaking.) But less upsetting is Bogg’s wardrobe (segway!), which saw Burton-esque bright colours, '50s-era silhouettes and glasses we should all be so lucky to see again. Dianne Wiest, if you can read this, lend me your movie clothes and also your friendship.
6. Rosalyn Rosenfeld, "American Hustle"
Jennifer Lawrence’s Rosalyn Rosenfeld isn’t the poster child for terrific motherhood, but out of respect for the '70s, we must acknowledge that even in the wake of setting the science oven on fire, she rocked valour like a champion. Also? Fur, animal print and more synthetics than you can shake a stick at. Frankly, all of our formalwear needs to improve upon itself in comparison.
7. Della Bea Robinson, "Ray"
Why we don’t talk about Kerry Washington as Della Bea Robinson every day is an embarrassment, so let’s first sing the praises of Washington’s portrayal of Ray Charles’ real wife, and then pay homage to her spectacular costumes. Since their relationships takes place across a 12 years, Robinson’s clothes evolve along with the era (and her personality/experience), going from light, printed, '50s day-dresses to clean, streamlined suits, true to the 1960s. No wonder Washington can rock solids so well on "Scandal."
8. Mama Morton, "Chicago"
There’s more than one kind of mom (duh), and Queen Latifah helped create one of the best in her role as Mama Morton in "Chicago." As the woman who runs the women’s prison, she not only delivers the quintessential performance of "When You’re Good To Mama" (a guide to life), she performs it in full '20s glamour, rocking tassels, beading, and a crown so commanding that even "The Great Gatsby" is jealous. (I mean, probably. After all, he is deceased.)
9. Miranda Priestly, "The Devil Wears Prada"
Is Miranda Priestly the best-dressed movie mom ever? Out of all the movie moms? In a word? Yes. Of course. She’s terrifyingly well-dressed. (And harnesses a power so great that she can secure an unpublished manuscript of Harry Potter for her children whenever she wants.) Even while working from home, she pulled off an off-the-shoulder sweater not everyone can execute successfully (I’m thinking of myself) -- not to mention her office looks which include everything from power suits to a collection of coats you could easily drown in. As for anything else? Well, that’s all.
10. Claire Peterson, "The Boy Next Door"
It’s important to pay homage to Jennifer Lopez in "The Boy Next Door" because it’s the most ridiculous movie ever made. (Also, I love it.) But in addition to the story of an almost-underage affair gone horribly awry, JLo brings it in bright turtlenecks, horizontal stripes, and neutral tank tops. She’s not a regular mom, you guys. She’s a cool mom. Which is the only thing lacking in this movie whatsoever, let’s be real.