Jeremy Scott’s Moschino and Classic Hollywood Musical Bombast: A Perfect Match
By Mark Wittmer
To celebrate its Resort 2022 collection, Moschino presents “Lightning Strikes,” a musical film directed by the brand’s creative director Jeremy Scott and starring singer and model Karen Elson. Brilliantly incorporating the collection and its spirit, the film imagines a fantasy world of music and old-Hollywood glamor, with an anachronistic timeline that chops, mixes, and lovingly take to the extreme some of the most outrageous mid-20th-century cultural touchstones.
The scene opens as Elson, clad in her awesome color-blocked waitress dress and hat, scurries around to serve eager breakfast eaters, who wear outfits that correspond to their meals: a fried egg jacket, a hat in the form of a stack of pancakes. Other diners wear brightly-colored team Moschino varsity jackets or cardigans and pleated mini skirts, augmenting the sense of retro romance and reminding us of 80’s Hollywood’s love for 50’s teen flicks.
In fact, all of the film’s more-or-less outrageous “costumes” are drawn from the Resort collection. It’s interesting to consider whether Scott had the film in mind the whole time when he was conceiving the collection, as the two feel so fully integrated: the musical feels precisely like the world these clothes should inhabit, and vice versa.
The musical aspect of the film quickly takes off as Elson slides a coin into a jukebox, and begins belting a cover of Chic’s “Everybody Dance” (all are distinctly 70’s, a choice that furthers the time-warping and playful sense of anachronism). With an impressive musical career under her belt in addition to her modeling skills, Elson’s singing chops are no joke – even though she keeps us smiling and laughing.
The musical numbers don’t stop, and each new song signals a shift in style and venue. Elson switches over to Lipps Inc.’s legendary hit “Funkytown,” and is suddenly flash mobbed by a group of 40’s gangsters and dames, although there is nothing noire about their pinstripe suits and high-waist dresses shimmying in a rainbow of bubbly colors. The film ends with a fun twist, but not until after an impressive original number – “Lightning Strikes” – which was written by Elson herself with songwriters Ian Fitchuk and Daniel Tashian. This final song and dance number are set on a stage that mimics a 60’s variety show set in the form of a pinball machine, echoing the collection’s bombastic pinball prints.
The film is the perfect way to capture the spirit of the collection – in fact, the collection practically demands it. Jeremy Scott is known for his conceptual yet literal, tongue-in-cheek, bombastic collections, but this one especially sings out for a special sort of presentation. Scott, Elson, and all of the creative team certainly deliver, and leave us confident that lightning strikes more than twice.
Moschino Creative Director | Jeremy Scott Film Director | Jeremy Scott Talent | Karen Elson Stylist | Carlyne Cerf de Dudzeele Cinematographer | Cristina Dunlap Production Designer | Aurelie Tailleffer Editor | Ellis Bahl Music Producer | Margo Price Choreographer | Denna Thomson Casting Director | Samuel Ellis Sheinman & Piergiorgio del Moro Makeup | Kabuki Hair | Jimmy Paul
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