21 JUN 2013

The Best 1960s Movie Sets

The New Zealand International Film Festival is coming with some digitally restored classics from the master of the thriller - Hitchcock, with Dial M for Murder (his only 3D film) and North by Northwest.

So bunker down by the fire - here's a list of other 60's inspired offerings from the UK, USA and Europe that will get you tuned in to this decade. It was a period that literally rocked our world with its counter culture and iconoclasm which also changed the face of design. More on the New Zealand International Film Festival here 2001 a Space Odyssey - 1968 Directed, produced and screenplay by Stanley Kubrick Based on The Sentinel by Arthur C. Clarke Production Designers Anthony Masters and Ernst Archer Anyone remember watching this on VHS? Stanley Kubrick was an amazing visionary and with 2001 the production design goes all out to create a compelling depiction of the future. He hired NASA spacecraft consultants Frederick Ordway and Harry Lange to conceive the technological world of 2001. With all the cool stark white interiors accented with red and burnt orange, the graphic displays, furniture and bold typography - 2001's vision of the future is inescapably influenced by the 1960s. What we end up with is a kind of retro-futurism. It's a nostalgia for how we used to view our future. We may not have achieved 2001's interplanetary space travel, AI computers and moon bases, but we do have the inflight entertainment and the flat screen tablet devices (iPads), which in 1968 were non-existent. The design of 2001 has often been referenced in bars and restaurants including the Hudson Bar Hotel interior by Philippe Starck. The Graduate - 1967 Directed By Mike Nichols Written by Buck Henry and Calder Willingham Production Design Richard Sylbert Set Decoration George Nelson Not only does this film showcase knockout acting, a pitch perfect Simon and Garfunkel score and a devilishly elegant Mrs Robinson, the movie radiates 1960s Los Angeles glamour. Viewers are seduced by the tropical planted setting which has us waiting for some poolside action. The Graduate is one of the key ground-breaking films of the late 1960s, and helped to set in motion a new era of filmmaking. The Royal Tenenbaums - 2001 Directed by Wes Anderson Written by Wes Anderson and Owen Wilson Production Designer David Wasco The Tenenbaums occupy a big house over a period of twenty something years, in a kind of dreamy New York. The house has enough rooms for each character to escape and develop their own quirky personality at odds with the others. If you tire of the plot, just look at the set design for an overload of visual stimulation that is off beat, funny and in tune with its dysfunctional characters. Down with Love - 2003 Directed by Peyton Reed Production Design by Andrew Laws, Set Decoration by Don Diers Not an all-time favourite film, but the stills of this fun set design are hilarious. Hard to go past its sunken living room - every home should have one, and the hot pink Saarinen Womb Chairs. Drinks anyone?- always at the ready with the Lucite bar cart.... A Single Man - 2009 Directed and Screenplay by Tom Ford Written by Christopher Isherwood Production Design by Dan Bishop For a contemporary take on the 60's, look at Tom Ford's debut film, A Single Man, with its beautifully shot, perfectly groomed interiors. In this world, dust doesn't land, paint doesn't peel and grass doesn't grow. Tom Ford directs in a suit, with the Lautner House, Julianne Moore and Colin Firth. That's it for this dynamic decade, and that is only a taster of some of the best designed and decorated film sets, coordinated, and obsessed over by a team of people that make these movies shine. Enjoy the Festival!

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