When it comes to classic Hollywood cinema, it's hard to beat George Cukor's 1939 film "The Women": Based on a play by the same name, men are notoriously neither seen nor heard, and it features an all-star lineup, with Joan Crawford and Norma Shearer playing romantic rivals. (Despite having an all-female cast, this isn't a film which would pass the Bechdel test.)
Smack in the middle of the movie, things change from black and white to vivid color for a fashion show — ostensibly for no other reason than to flex the Technicolor technology of the time. Cukor reportedly didn't like it and wanted it removed from the film, but how lucky for us that he didn't: It shows off legendary costume designer Adrian's work. Plus, it provided designer Jeremy Scott with the inspiration for his latest collection at Moschino.
Dubbed "Jungle Red" — after the name of a nail polish shade central to the film's plot — Moschino's Fall 2021 fashion show pays homage to that classic scene of "The Women."
The host, played by the iconic Maye Musk, cries out "Lumière! Musique!" and we're off into Scott's fantasy of pre-war fashion by way of Moschino's nod-wink sense of humor. Models walk through several vignettes — living as a businesswoman in the city in banker suits and platform oxfords; taking repose on the farm in quirky, cow-covered prints and tailored potato sacks; getting a bit of culture at the art museum in painterly gowns; enjoying a "shopping safari" on Fifth Avenue complete with crocodile trains and sequined leopard tails; and finally, going out for a night at the theatre, with sophisticated Old Hollywood-worthy gowns with opera-glove shawls and satin boot bags.
Like "The Women," Moschino's Fall 2021 show features an all-star line up of models, including Hailey Bieber, Joan Smalls, Precious Lee, Lily Aldridge, Miranda Kerr and Winnie Harlow — not to mention supers like Karen Elson, Shalom Harlow, Guinivere van Seenus and Carolyn Murphy. For the finale, burlesque star Dita von Teese turns to reveal that her darling, heart-covered red gown also has a heart-shaped cutout strategically placed to reveal her derrière. (That one would not pass the Hays Code!)
If that sounds like a lot of camp, well, it is! This is Moschino designed by Jeremy Scott, after all, where kitsch is all but guaranteed. But for every ball skirt featuring a giant cow, there was a natty tweed suit; for every flamingo dress, a perfectly proportioned safari dress. Perhaps women won't be racing to snap up a potato sack proposition for evening, but isn't it nice for fashion to feel fun now and then?
See the complete Moschino Fall 2021 collection in the gallery below: