Monday, January 17, 2011

Red Carpet-baggers: Do Critics Hit the Miss?

Green with envy? Angelina does her star turn in an elegant green gown.
Of you knew before I did- the Golden Globes Awards went down last night. You probably watched it on T.V. Twitter was all, uh, atwitter.  You watched, listened and read about the WINNERS & LOSERS, the hits and misses, and watched who walked down the red carpet. It was MAJOR news: who won, what they said. Oh, and almost as importantly, WHAT THEY WORE. 

Nearly audible were the whirling of ooohs and ahhs, a veritable cooing over the stellar shines: Angelina in her Atelier Versace, Anne in her Armani Prive. And who couldn't resist the collective clucking, the turgid tsk-tsking over the fringe elements playing peek-a-boo on January Jones in her cardinal Versace? Eyebrows raising ceilings in stern disapproval over the dress selection of a certain otherwise embodiment of perfection, Halle Berry?

Playing Neutral: Scarlett manages to make it on both lists in her nude red carpet number.
Dare I even bring up the Hollywood BALLYHOO over an Englishwoman's eccentric take of a tornado tearing up a florist's shop; who appeared not only topsy-turvy but TIPSY, and, and, AND with MIS-MATCHED SHOES, no less! OH MAH LAWD, HAVE THE MERCY!  Most critics were DEVASTATED by the blast of Hurricane Helen-Bonham-Carter.  

Yet somehow, "Style" MIRACULOUSLY survived in the eye of the storm, in the eye of the beholder, really. One critic's candidate for the hit-list was another critic's contender for the MISS list, with the likes of Sandra Bullock, Clair Danes, Christina Hendricks, Leighton Meester, among others, who prominently placed on both.
Seeing Red: Critics blew hot & cold over Hendricks' boiling Romona Keveza gown.
With only a few unanimous HITS, it leaves this carpet-bagger wondering: just how on target are the critics? How representative is the critic's eye for the "average" woman Are the critically declared celebrity misses still a hit with "the Missus"? With a huge industry booming in knock-off dresses inspired by the frocks walking the red carpet, does a thumbs-down dress affect the sales of a copy-cat gown? 

There is no disputing the fact that we, the adoring public, are almost as much interested in the costume of celebrity as their craft. We seem as much obsessed in a star's body as we are in their body of work. IS THIS GOOD, IS THIS BAD? Not my question. I am left wondering however, how STAR power affects OUR style? Does it validate our own personal view of the tasteful, the sartorial, the glamorous? 

And, who was YOUR choice stand-out dresser on  this year's Golden Globe RED CARPET? Was it frock or folly? Was there anyone, if any, who incited your style inspirations?

Swan Song? Competing with Bjork's infamous Swan Dress for most memorable Red Carpet Don't,  HBC gets nominated for her Westwood floral and tulle tsunami complete with a pair of mis-matched pink and green satin shoes. And the winner is........


jemina said...

Bella, I just went to fabsugar to check out who wear whom, and seriously I don't really care about the hits and misses, since most of the time those stars are dependent on their stylists and sponsors obviously. As for HBC, doesn't she always quirkily (is this a word?) even in real life, so i didn't even lift an eyebrow when i saw her in those two different colour shoes. But, if I have to pick favourites, it's got to be Angelina in her sparkling green versace and I also love Claire Dane's simple backless pink (sort of corrallish) dress by Calvin Klein, and I also adore J Lo's dress. Do you have any faves?


stylenuggets said...

I loved Angelina's choice of colour and cut. She sticks to what suits her and sometimes that's a good thing. And J Lo's gown was great for the ethereal look that was so different from any other gown there.

the Citizen Rosebud said...

I agree with you ladies. For me the clear cut winner of celebrity style is the movie siren, Angelina Jolie. She stunned in her shimmery green goddess of a dress, looking absolutely positively a celestial body in the heavens. She has shown time and time again that she has staying star power.

I also liked, against the opinions of some critics and with the opinions of others, Scarlet Johannsen's dress. I thought she looked lovely.

mispapelicos said...

I will watch the repetition on today satelite tv. I shall let you kow.
Mil besos guapa.

Marta said...

i was always so ignorant when it comes to golden globes! however, this is so true that what was worn on that occasion makes a pleasant chill running down your spine! i just have to check all the dresses...

Lee Oliveira said...

Bella, my favourite look for this Golden Globe goes to... hahaha
I loved Angelina's look and totally obsessed with Olivia Wilde in Marchesa
Lee x

UN-stitched said...

I know - those celebrities! I think their style inspires me, but this may not be in a good alot of it is unattainable. Anyway, I love Scarlett's overall look, it is sweet and the detail of the dress up close is a masterpiece. I'm not afraid to say that I liked Anne Hathaway's dress. I loved the color and thought she looked beautiful.
Thanks for posting, always so fun talking about celebrities, anyway!

Pam @ over50feeling40 said...

Since I tend to look at the older actresses more so than the younger...I was taken with Jane Fonda! She looked amazing! I know she probably does medical proceedures I cant afford...but wow..she looks great

Isquisofrenia said...

i really liked angelinas dress
so elegant!

Marissa said...

Great spin on the standard awards show style post! I always found it ridiculous how much attention is paid to critics' picks when every critic says something different. It's all a matter of opinion (and in my opinion, Christina, Leighton, Scarlett and Olivia Wilde all looked stunning).

Sara Kristiina said...

Oh I loved Helena Bonham-Carter's dress! And those different kind of shoes were fabulous, and so fun! :) She's great and she's the most fabulous on red carpet! Not boring at all ;>

autumn, coffee and inspiration

the Citizen Rosebud said...

I am loving the feedback, my friends.

@ Sara: I agree! HBC is NEVER, EVER boring, and as Jemina pointed out, Helena is pretty quirky in real life, so her red carpet looks is well suited for her personality.

@Lee, @ Marissa: you know I did myself a disservice in leaving out mention of Olivia Wilde: she really topped the night with her beautiful Marchessa gown and overall well put together look.

@Pam: Interesting observation: I didn't see any older celeb I recognized that made the critic's lists. So I didn't even know Jane Fonda walked the red carpet last night. One of my favorite actresses is HELEN MIRREN, and she still stuns with style as well as talent on every red carpet she rides.

In regards to the medical assistance to beauty, yes Jane Fonda an afford a wonderful menu of treatments, and a personal trainer, and...even woman half her age employ the same beauty maintaining tactics. But Fonda still sizzles! And pity I didn't see more attention paid to the older walkers of the red carpet. -Bella Q

the Citizen Rosebud said...

Oh and Christine: I agree, Anne Hathaway was stellar! I would say Anglelina, Anne and Olivia ruled the night with their style.

Anonymous said...

I didn't watch the Golden Globes, but judging from the pictures on this post, I LOVE Scarlett Johanson's gown; she looks so classy and beautiful!

the Citizen Rosebud said...

I thought so too. So I was quite surprised that while other nude dresses make the A-list, Scar-Jo's was both praised and panned.

Kimberlee said...

What a great way to write a Golden Globes post! I don't always agree with the critics. I'm sure everyone will put HBC on their "Worst Dressed" but that's her style, she always dresses eccentric. I don't think she gives a flying (you know what) which I admire. Critics wouldn't have much of a job if she didn't wear mismatched shoes. And yes all these celebs have stylist so maybe we should be judging "Best and Worst Stylists." Rachel Zoe gets props from me for not only her outfit but dressing Anne Hathaway.

Unknown said...

With Johansson's dress, you could hardly tell where the dress began and she ended, but the dress was beautiful. I just get so tired of hearing all the raving about how Angelina Jolie is just such fashion perfection. Frankly, I think, fashionwise, she's been boring. I was not crazy about her gown. But to be completely honest, I'm not a fan of hers at all; so that may color my opinion. ~Serene

Comtesse de ferveur said...

Angelina was amazing in that green. I loved it. Have only glanced through, there were so many 'meh' dresses it's unbelievable.
xx Comtesse xx

simple said...

I really liked Mila Kunis' dress!

the Citizen Rosebud said...

@Kimberlee: Hello! And thank you for visiting my blog! I see we both wrote about the Golden Globes, and that's prob what I best appreciate about celebrity style, it can start up a dialogue between strangers about contemporary fashion. You make such a great point about the stylist factor. It really comes down to that mostly, right? Who trusted the best stylist? Kudos for Zoe on her dressing Hathaway. A real winner.

@Serene: sometimes I think my feelings (meh) for Jolie color my opinon of her. But she has undeniable star power.

@Comtesse: right? in this day and age we have too much mediocre swimming the red carpet.

the Citizen Rosebud said...

@Simple: you have good taste! I believe her frock made most of the critic's Hit lists.

Anonymous said...

Angelina is a total knockout. I LOVE that woman. She wore emerald green better than any of them and always carries herself so well. Sandra Bullock also rocked my socks and Emma Stone perfected the art of simplicity.

Anonymous said...

Actually, this is something I've been thinking about recently in connection to style bloggers. Has it changed my selections when I thrift? I KNOW it will change my selections in the thrifts next year and the following year.

I don't watch TV so only experienced Golden Globes vicariously on Twitter. Not much bothered by mismatched shoes--have done it myself while dressing in a groggy state.

The dress I admired most was by Oscar de la Renta. Simplicity.

Second best, Armani Preve

Matters not, as I will never need such a dress.

Rags Against the Machine

Heather Fonseca said...

Great article Bella! I'm terrible about these things. I don't have TV so I don't watch anything. But looking back at the photos now posted online I'm very impressed with everyone's look, and very glad that Helena Bonham Carter gave us something to talk about, otherwise it would be all perfection!


the Citizen Rosebud said...

@ Brooke: Agreed! Angelina was the Queen of Green.

@ Terri: I just left you a big long comment but there was some glitch and lost it. Sigh.

@Heather: thanks so much! You know I don't TV either. I chose to select from a variety of online sources who gave the yay, or nay.

A BRIT GREEK said...

Like J said, i don't really care about the hits or misses, i'm all about checking out who wore what (frock, suit or something more exciting perhaps?) and HOW they wore it. I was happy that Olivia is finally getting some spotlight action and it is a gorgeous dress she wore -it's v. commercial.

Great post and questions raised!
anyhoos, sorry i've been m.i.a of late sweets.


Rosalind said...

What an interesting post - once again, so eloquently written! I love the fact that Helena Bonham Carter decided to stand out from the norm. She epitomises Vivienne Westwood style, and I think the idea of wearing mismatching shoes is brilliant. Nice to see a little bit of British eclectic-ness over the pond! I also loved Angelina Jolie-s dress. V. reminiscent of a hollywood screen siren I thought.
Finally, congratulations on your blog being name checked alongside Fashion Toast and Bryan Boy! I can definitely see why she finds you inspiring, as your writing is just incredible - much better than either of them in my opinion.

the Citizen Rosebud said...

Roz: in case I ever wonder why YOU are my personal favorite blogger. Always contribute just the right amount to the conversation. Thoughtful, thought out and in this case: highly flattering! xo. -Q

Unknown said...

Im probably going to disagree with everyone and say that no-one stood out to me except maybe HBC. I love her originality whereas everyone else could have been in pix from 5 years ago. I'm soo fed up of seeing the same kinda dresses every year. Yes they may change the colour slightly or the material but the designs are basically the same. Im not really into hollywood style tho as they all dress so safe. I like a bit of originality.

Unknown said...

and CH's dress is very like one kate winslet wore a few years ago!!

the Citizen Rosebud said...

Fuyume: hello! we are pals on twitter,so thanks for stopping by. I love your response. I laughed when you said they could be from any year, which when I did image searches i had to make sure it was 2011 (case in point Kyra Sedgewick) HBC tore it up! She's never conformed to Hollywood standards and she looked just like herself. People seem to either love the look or not get it. Nice to know there are a few out there that value the eccentrics.

the Citizen Rosebud said...

different shoes and haircolor, Fuyume. totally different, lol.

Isquisofrenia said...

oh yeah hers is been sunny but soon it will be cold again!

Anonymous said...

I think its time to celebrate movie stars looking like MOVIE STARS! Anne Hathaway rocked it in her Armani Prive gown and Angie killed it with color, sparkle and the suddle 80's shoulder. But really could any silhouette look bad on that goddess? I thought there was a lot of glamour and fashion on that red carpet and that should be celebrated. XO Mish

the Citizen Rosebud said...

Mish: you couldn't have said it better! I do think Jolie knows what looks good on her, and knows the power of looking the part, which she does. Over and over again.

Hathaway was/is a winner. She's the real deal.

And I agree with you: bring the glamor back!

Carys said...

You've raised some really interesting points here. My personal favourite was Helena Bonham Carter, just because she's so brave, and doesn't care what anyone thinks! I also love how her clothes look so amazing on her somehow, even though anyone else would look terrible in them.
From Carys of La Ville Inconnue

the Citizen Rosebud said...

I wouldn't look terrible in a Vivienne Westwood gown, I assure you, Carys, ha ha. And I doubt you would look terrible either. But the mix was pretty much a whirlwind, and a bit overwhelming. That said: she looked marvelous. She was HBC, and is gorgeous gorgeous gorgeous as much as she is talented talented talented. One of the ONLY sources of the big critics who liked her look and put it on the Hit list was the UK Guardian. I think the look is classic Brit, crazy cocktail of tulle and floral and all.

PS: oh yeah, you know I LOVED the mis-matched shoes!

Good Eye said...

I didn't watch it. Couldn't care less about the stars, what they wore, what they said, what they ate, whatever. I do find the mis-matched shoe situation interesting, though. HAHA! I think the reviews DO effect what trickles down, just by virtue of the fact that the designers from the labels that the "rest of us" wear actually listen to the critiques. I don't wear gowns, so it doesn't effect me either way. Interesting question though!

Unknown said...

You are a mad blogger !
(in a great way!)
Your writing skills never cease to impress nor amaze me!
i want to be more like you this year!
More "bang" for your buck, so to speak!
Thanks for the tips re: interviewing a shop. i will be putting it into motion this week.

I didn't watch, nor did I know about the globes, honestly, they 'sway' me too much to be 'judgey' and I am trying very hard to let that go ;)
I actually prefer the "misses" when it comes to star fashion. I like to see them choosing for themselves and not for "us" or for their publicist.
One of my favorite outfits of all time was the Gap Tee that Ms.Stone wore with her suit at the Oscars!
Love Ya, Bella!
(i like the mis-matched shoes, though not in green/red, too christmassy ;)

Vanessa said...

I thought I had commented on this but apparently I did not.
I know that HBC looked a little, well, daffy, but I found it endearing. I'd frankly rather see something that interested me than something that bored me to tears. (Eva Longoria in black fishtail, yawn. Lea Michele in another fluffy peach concoction, groan.)
I did love Anne Hatheway's gown, primarily for the long sleaves. It's fun to see that shape make a comeback!

Sarah said...

I have given some thought to why fashion magazines are awash with actresses and musicians rather than socialites or models these days.

I don't think it's a bad thing. I appreciate seeing fashion and makeup on lots of women who are closer to "the real world" in terms of height, build, skin, and lifestyle. Yes, many actresses are on the typically "pretty" and svelte end of the real world spectrum, and they have lots of professional assistance once they make it big. But...I identify more when I see Scar-Jo or Drew Barrymore in fashion than when I see a coltish runway model, or a wealthy Manhattan scenester who doesn't really work as actresses or musicians must.

I like how InStyle magazine shows an array of performing celebrities walking carpets or attending parties in gowns by big names. I see the gowns on petite bodies, curving bodies, brown bodies, freckled bodies. These showings give haute designers relevance in the real world.

I don't know if that's part of the goal as fashion mags have shifted to feature non-models so often. Or are they just trying to appeal to a bigger audience by featuring women so many of us feel we know through our screens and earphones?

I don't know if I'm making any sense here, and I haven't directly answered your questions. I guess I'm just trying to say that it's valid to focus on performers wearing high fashion, and to study how they wear it. We can learn from their mistakes, and aspire to their triumphs, because they're more like us.

As with any topic that has critics -- films, books, hotels, restaurants, cars, theater -- it's up to us how much we value the reviews and let them shape our choices.

the Citizen Rosebud said...

@Vanessa: we are of one mind: I love eccentric dressers!

Cloudy: you are making TOTAL sense, on perpective I think sees it spot on. We are all mystified (I'm not crazy about the actress on the cover mostly- unless they're one I respect, and Cate Blanchett and Helen Mirren can't be on every mag)but you have a good point how celebs offer a variety of colors, shapes and sizes not allowed on the runway. Good point.