With the Virginia Film Festival launching tomorrow (albeit a virtual launch), we’ve been thinking about our favorite denim moments in cinematic history and those special characters whose utter cool makes us want to immediately try to recreate it for ourselves. Whether you love the badass ladies Thelma and Louise, or the artistic sex appeal of Demi Moore in Ghost, we’ve got you covered with the jeans to take those looks off the screen and into your living room. Hell, we’d recommend making yourself a little red carpet for your River of No Return look, even if the red carpet only leads to your couch for the next VAFF screening on your docket.
Rebel Without a Cause
To begin: the classics. No one will ever forget James Dean in his red jacket and classic blue jeans. We may never be able to be as cool or reckless as James Dean, but we can sure strive to look like him. For Rebel vibes, try a classic: Levi’s Wedgie: Charleston Moves. Pair with your dad’s old red Members Only jacket and you’re set. You’ll master the hand-in-your-pocket pose soon enough.
Breakfast at Tiffany’s
Is this the most iconic look from Breakfast at Tiffany’s? Not by a long shot. There are pearls and black dresses, oversized men’s shirts and trenchcoats. But, let’s not forget Audrey on the fire escape singing Moon River. We recommend the cropped Hudson Holly Straight: Impromptu (it even has Holly in the name!) for an updated version of her dark wash pedal pushers. Listen to Frank Ocean’s cover of Moon River on your quarantined porch and you’re the 2020 version of Holly Go-Lightly.
River of No Return
If only we could all be Marilyn Monroe... She made the West look fashionable and sexy in River of No Return and we’d give anything to get even a smidgen of that sex appeal. Recreate her long legs with the Paige Margot Skinny: Orpheum. Pair with your sexiest white blouse and, I don’t know, make your partner pretend your living room is suddenly a saloon.
Thelma and Louise
Sexy ladies like these are the reason that high-waisted 90s “mom” jeans returned to our closets and we totally understand why. Their take-no-prisoners bad-assery is just the kind of way we like to feel in our jeans. Turn yourself and your best friend into women on the run in the Citizens of Humanity Liya: Skywalk and GRLFRND Helena: Bandera. Pair with a Perfect White Tee tank and you’re ready to ride off into the sunset.
We love Demi for a lot of reasons, but we especially love her when she’s playing an artist in clay-splattered overalls. Is there anything more iconic than that short hair and those wistful scenes? Put on a pair of Paige Sierra Overalls and walk around your house just waiting on Patrick Swayze’s ghost. If he doesn’t appear, at least you still look like you walked off set as the hottest woman there.
Dazed and Confused
Fry, piggies, fry!! We’ll never forget the first time we saw Parker Posey as the coolest girl in highschool, tormenting those freshmen and looking so HOT in the process. Ever since then we’ve wished we were more like her when we were 17 and less like our nerdy selves. If you want to embody the 70s Dazed and Confused vibe sans after-school bullying, try out the Agolde Reese Relaxed Short: Wonder. (It may be a little chilly for jean shorts right now, but might we note that with a jersey tee, this is a super easy, super cute Halloween costume. And, psst: if you’re looking for more Halloween ideas, check out our all of our costume inspiration here).
Oh, Judd. Oh, feathered hair and fingerless leather gloves. He took denim to the fringes and we love him for it. If your alter-ego is a little bit moody, a little bit outsider chic, then try the Levi’s Sherpa Trucker Jacket: Warm Daddy Mac. Pair it with a Rails plaid and you’re on your way to being the most sought after kid in detention.
Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants
Ah, the sweethearts of high school, with none of the cool girl meanness or aloof outsiderness. These were just four best friends, trying to help and support each other. To be honest, when we saw the movie we thought that there was no way one pair of jeans could reasonably flatter four different body types. But then we met the Citizen Rocket. It’s the easiest, most flattering daily jean. Buy one for yourself and your three best friends and hope one of them will wear them swimming in Greece someday just like Alexis Bledel.