still relevant? the legacy of the American-psycho style

some styles are immortalized on the big screen. Helen’s cabaret look, Zeenat Aman’s cult hippie look in Dum Maaro Dum, Sri Devi’s sensuous blue saree look in Mr. India, or Shahrukh Khan’s sweater over the shoulder look in Mohobbattein. these are styles we look up to and want to follow. In this series of articles, we look at if some styles are still relevant and why did they become iconic in the first place.

Today we talk about the cult favourite Christian Bale starrer, America Psycho. Released at the turn of the century, the movie is a sharp critique of the commercialized yuppie culture in New York; a time of over-consumption and materialistic ambition. Patrick Bateman is a savvy investment banker who cannot stand if someone else has a better business card but doesn’t flinch before committing heinous murders.

The unforgettable 1980s style

the movie perfectly captures the style and sensibility of the 1980s and a snapshot into what was the decade of decadent extravagance. channelling the era’s ego-centric energy, the characters flaunt their superficial lifestyles with pinstriped suits, double-breasted tuxedos, and flashy watches with fancy ties. it is the making of affluence and privilege. to dress like Bateman is to dress for power. Their checkbooks, their business cards, their suits, and their ties define their identity.

fashion was an important element of the movie. often, the label of the suits was more important than how it looked. we think it is safe to say that if Patrick Bateman was alive today, he would definitely be mixing It up with streetwear. but the yuppie of yesterday is not as far away from today as we might want to think. while the clothes may not be similar in fashion, the unrealistic standards of beauty and fitness have remained the same. the whole point of the movie is that if we strip off the surface, nothing is underneath, and somehow that still remains the same. at least, the elite sections of the society.

but we are getting carried away. while the philosophy of American Psycho still holds true, in recent years we have also seen some of the fashion styles including trench coats and double-breasted suits coming back to the runways of major fashion houses around the world. all we could hope for is that even if the style is revived, the era of power-hungry, shallow megalomaniacs is not revived along with it.

that was all from our side. if you haven’t watched American Psycho yet, don’t wait for it any longer. it is a timeless masterpiece of debauchery, decadence, and mayhem. a perfect weekend watch.

until next time, live aastey!