Plein Soleil

May 13, 2011

A tip of the hat to Sweetu of C'H'C'M' for tipping me off to this 1960 French film based on the novel The Talented Mr. Ripley by Patricia High Smith. As you'd expect, the storyline is very similar to the American version of The Talented Mr. Ripley with Matt Damon and Jude Law that came out almost 40 years later. The story is about Americans in Italy, and both films heavily feature Prep/Ivy/Trad/Americana style in the main characters' costumes. But with France being geographically closer to Italy, the earlier film is bursting with sprezzatura.

Plein Soleil was Alain Delon's first major motion picture and certainly one of his best (though I can't say it tops Le Samoura├»). While the more recent The Talented Mr. Ripley was a bigger hit and probably a better picture, this is still a film that should not be overlooked; whether it's for the clothing or the storyline.

The first shot of Tom Ripley

Blue OCBD, jean cut chinos

Loafers and rolled cuffs

Cuffed chinos, horsebit loafers

What's this? more loafers, a wooden wardrobe closet, and lots of luggage

Unstructured blazer with side vents, repp ties behind Mr. Ripley

Pretty boy swag

Bare feet onboard, always, cuffed chinos and a loose-fitting pink shirt

Chambray and navy chinos on the character Philippe Greenleaf

An ornate pocketwatch


Spread collar, no placket, no pocket

A summer suit

Paisley silk robe

The uniform

Unlined sportcoat in hand

Back flap pockets

Pink satin lining

Black Prince Alberts

Terrycloth blazer



Have you seen Le Cercle Rouge? Probably my favourite Alain Delon movie.


Pretty much does it for me. Will be watching. Great post.

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