Friday, May 13

Classy Cannes

It's that time of the year again! Time for major movie players and internationally acclaimed cleavage to converge upon the shores of the French Riviera, in a more raucuous version of an annual actuarial convention.

The festivalgoers come in all shapes and sizes, from the Japanese kid with trouser braces to French actress Yolande Moreau (who would probably regard this book and this book to be utter nonsense and promptly consume them for breakfast washed down with a glass of chilled white wine).

I've found that the Cannes Film Festival has certainly matured and developed over the years, much like Soon-Yi Previn Allen (who now looks just like Woody's daughter instead of granddaughter). There's a touch of class now, which is increasingly evident in the standards of dress.

While Paris Hilton hasn't quite learnt how to keep her legs closed, at least she is mostly covered up and the unclear lighting allow us some glimmer of hope that she may in fact be wearing underwear. Maybe next time, they'll raise the standards by not inviting her at all.

It hasn't always been this tasteful at Cannes though. In 2001, it was still socially acceptable to mix one's diamonds, beret and racerback unitard.

In fact, this laissez-faire approach to red carpet fashion was out of control. Famous people were putting on things that would have sparked an outrage in their home country:

It is the fashion equivalent of watching a menage-a-trois involving Quentin Tarantino. No marriage could possibly have survived such a disaster.

Well that was then and this is now. So enjoy the rest of the festival and "You Stay Classy, Cannes".

Thursday, May 12

Skimpy heroics

While Hong Kong languishes in some kind of year-round non-ratings tv hell, our neighbours across the South China Sea sit in the thrall of DARNA. As champion warrior of people who would normally qualify for benefits under a generous social welfare state, Darna has been wowing audiences with her skimpy heroics.

It is no surprise that the costume is a real ratings-grabber. Compared to DC Comics' Wonder Woman, Darna offers double the action with only half the clothing. There is much to be dazzled by - the golden egg being laid in the middle of her forehead, the Janet Jackson inspired sunburst shield and short shorts that show no mercy to celllulite. But the true extent of Darna's powers are revealed by the infinite supply of tissue paper emanating from her crotch:
Darna Woman, Darna Woman.
All the world's waiting for you,
and the 2-ply you possess

The fascination with sexy red super heroine outfits is not a new one. You may recall how Elektra managed to scrape US$14 million in its opening weekend by putting Jennifer Garner in a Victoria's Secret Body By Victoria body shaping bustier and naughty bed ties.

Just how long has this sexualisation of super-hero outfits been going on? To answer that question we have to go back a long long way, some thirty years ago. Ah the 70s, a simple time when all the drugs made people too euphoric to criticise what each other was wearing.

If only Sean Connery had stayed on being James Bond for a little longer, then the world today would be a much less complicated place.