Tuxedos in Movies: ‘The Great Gatsby’

‘The Great Gatsby’ by F. Scott Fitzgerald is a classic tale of romance, tragedy, and opulence.  In a way, the story itself depicts a setting as much as it does the characters.  The story takes place in the ‘Roaring Twenties’, a prosperous period in America leading up to Prohibition that was marked for wild and extravagant parties.  Because of this, the film features no shortage of very classy, very timeless formal wear!

In December, the 6th film adaptation will hit theaters.  The film is directed by Baz Luhrmann and stars Leonardo DiCaprio.  Sartorially speaking, this film is significant for two reasons.  The first is obvious.  With a large array of formal wear playing such a large role in such a classic story that will reach such a large audience, this is the sort of thing that can set trends, or restore them.

While I doubt that the release of the film will single-handedly see a return to white tie or black tie attire, I do think that the fun side of being formal will begin to percolate through the minds of our culture.  A film like this can remind people that tuxedos aren’t just a uniform to be dutifully worn to a friend’s wedding, nor an uncomfortable encumbrance.  A tuxedo in this context can be a thing that makes fun times better.

The second reason that this film is important is because of the setting.  The ‘Roaring Twenties’ were a long time ago.  To be exact, the beginning of this story takes place in 1922, exactly 90 years from today.  But as you can see from the pictures above and the trailer below, the styles they wore then still look smashing today!  It’s a testament to the black tie standards we’re always going on about.  Some styles come and go, while other styles stay put.  That’s because when you get it right, it’s timeless.