Style and Substance

Hello there. I’m Hila from the blog, le projet d’amour. Thanks for having me, Jen!

When Jen asked me to compile a guest post, the first thought that entered my head was beautiful films. Anyone who reads my blog knows I’m pretty much a film nerd, so I wanted to talk about some films that mirror the beautiful aesthetic of Jen’s blog. I call these movies ‘style & substance’ films. I.e., films that have depth, but that also make you want to sink into their aesthetic, and perhaps their wardrobes.

I’d love to hear your favourite films, please do tell …


Set in a remote 1920s boarding school for girls, Cracks is a psychological period film that borrows heavily from the aesthetic of water surrounding the school. I basically sat through this film coveting Eva Green’s wardrobe and seething with envy. There is one particular scene in which she confidently strides in a pair of gorgeous wide-legged pants, a delicate deep blue blouse and a scarf woven through her hair. I swear, I heard sighs of delight emanating from my dvd player.


I Am Love

I Am Love is the kind of film that lingers through your senses. Tilda Swinton plays a wealthy Italian matriarch who embarks on a process of self-discovery, nostalgia and love through an affair with a much younger chef. The scenery of Milan, the Italian landscape, and the lush imagery of food all combine to create a deeply evocative and sensual film.


Trois Couleurs: Rouge

One of my favourite films ever, by one of the most brilliant European directors, Krzysztof Kieslowski. Trois Couleurs: Rouge is part of a trilogy of films that explore the cultural symbolism of the French flag through its colours: Blue, White and Red. Rouge is my favourite film in the trilogy, probably because of Irene Jacob’s sensitive performance as the heroine, Valentine. She is literally bathed in red and a white, hazy light throughout the film, making you feel as if she inhabits her own universe.


The Red Shoes

This is my ‘if I were stranded on a desert island’ film. I could watch it over and over again. There are very few films that compare with The Red Shoes in terms of visual allure. Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger’s gorgeously expressionistic film is filled with colour, surreal imagery and the kind of wardrobe that you only dream about. Moira Shearer is the ballerina heroine of the film who must choose between a ballet career and the man she loves. Based on Hans Christian Andersen’s fairy tale of the same name, The Red Shoes is like a magical fairy tale for adults.


Bright Star

Jane Campion knows how to create costume and period films that come straight from my dreams. Based on the Romantic poet, John Keats’s biography, this film surpasses typical costume dramas through its delicate and poetic aesthetic. From the intricate sewing on costumes, to the highlighting of the natural landscape, Bright Star is a visual re-imagining of Keats’s poetry.


Guest Blog by Hila from Le Projet D’Amour. You can also find Hila on Twitter!

11 Responses to “Style and Substance”
  1. abigail says:

    so happy you included bright star- that movie rocked my aesthetic for both my home and clothing (not that I have rooms full of butterflies or large statement hats on my head…)(I blogged about it too). And I full heartedly agree with I Am Love, makes me want to watch it again, let alone live in Italy! That Tilda is amazing.

    And I look forward to watching Cracks and The Red Shoes! yeah for movie recommendations!

    nice to meet you and to hear about your blog! (off to check it out now!)


  2. slow lorus says:

    Great picks, every last one!

    The Red Shoes has been one of my favorite films ever since I was little and I love that one of our local theaters (the Trylon in Mpls) has been screening it in all its restored Technicolor glory for the past few Christmases. BTW, Cracks is also absolutely gorgeous up on the big screen.

    I’d add Wong Kar-Wai’s In the Mood for Love to your list!

  3. Looking forward to checking out these films- I’m seriously in need of a bit of a film education!

  4. Joy says:

    Such a pretty post. Great picks.

  5. Leanne says:

    Hila, I follow your blog and love it. This is a terrific post! I am also a big fan of Kieslowski’s Trilogy, but Blue is my favorite. I also love The Double Life of Veronique…

  6. Hello Hila!

    I remember seeing the trailer for Cracks and being extremely intrigued, but had forgotten about it since then – will look it up again now…

    I absolutely love The Red Shoes – I first watched it when I was young and doing ballet lessons. It’s so beautiful.

  7. Monica says:

    new films for me to check out. thanks so much!
    The Red Shoes is a film that has haunted me ever since I saw it in my late teens.

  8. TC says:

    I enjoyed so much watching Trois Couleurs:Rouge,Bright Star and Cracks. Hila`s reviews always make me want to watch(or sometimes re-watch:) the films. Happy to see this guest-post

  9. M Violetta says:

    Wonderful post! I also love Trois Couleurs: Rouge – although, like Leanne, Blue is my favourite. I Am Love sounds wonderful!
    For me The Piano is one of the most striking and beautiful and emotional films – the soundtrack by Michael Nyman is stunning!
    Thank you

  10. Camila Faria says:

    Hila, you’re my favorite film nerd! I guess I’m a little bit of a film nerd myself. I must confess I haven’t watched The Red Shoes, but now I look forward to do so!

  11. hila says:

    hey guys, so glad you like my picks!

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