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5 Movies to Watch Just for the Costumes

BY jiayi ying 04/22/2016

When Tina Tangalakis wasn’t hitting the books as a high schooler in Los Angeles, she worked at an independent, single-screen movie theater called The Royal, managing the concession stands as a member of The Royal Candygirls, a self-dubbed crew that Wes Anderson would definitely approve of. Tina’s years there led her to study the ins-and-outs of costume design in college—here, some the Della designer’s greatest film recs.


“This is from a movie called Artemisia. It was based on the true story of a professional painter during the Renaissance. She was a young female painter, so she wasn’t really acknowledged and, being younger when I first saw it, I really related to her. But the costumes are just powerful, and they tell a story by themselves. She’s very constricted by corsets and dark clothing, and I think that translates into how she was depressed by her circumstances, even though she was such a good artist.”



Wings of the Dove was one of Helena Bonham Carter’s first bigger roles. It takes place in turn-of-the-century 1900s, and the costumes were just stunning. There was something so elegant and complex in the clothing they wore. I remember going to the theater multiple times to watch it.”


1 dellagoldtentdress
Gold Tile Tent Dress
10 OF A KIND .



“Bram Stoker's Dracula came out right before I started high school. As a young girl, this was one of the most swoon-worthy films for me. What else can be more dreamy than corsets and Keanu Reeves? I remember watching this film on repeat, indulging in the eerily romantic story, and soaking in every detail of the gothic-style costumes.”


Elizabeth showed at The Royal when I worked there and was my dream come true for costumes. I was enamored with the gorgeous and historically accurate clothing—and the enchanting acting of the young Cate Blanchett. I used to sneak into the movie theatre whenever I could to watch this film.”


7 dellarubytentdress
Red India Tent Dress
12 OF A KIND .



“I loved Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers movies growing up. Legend has it that Ginger Rogers helped design this famous dress from Top Hat. It was fully beaded. Each arm, weighed 16 pounds, but you can’t really tell when she’s dancing. That was one of the first costume stories—this beautiful dress from the thirties—that really excited me and got me interested.”



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