The fashion of holiday films -- Our style critics grade the wardrobe of ''Brokeback Mountain'' and three others

By Clarissa Cruz
Updated December 16, 2005 at 05:00 AM EST
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Top honors go to the gilded kimonos in Memoirs of a Geisha and Reese Witherspoon’s flirty ’50s dresses in Walk the Line, but Hollywood has given us quite a few sartorial treats this holiday season.

1. The hottest Western shirt since Madonna’s ”Don’t Tell Me” video: Heath Ledger’s plaid number in Brokeback Mountain. ”[In] Paul Newman Westerns or Steve McQueen movies, their clothes looked too small,” says Brokeback costumer Marit Allen. ”[The shirts] were tight under the arms and slimmer.” What was good for Steve McQueen is good for everyone.

2. As Meredith in The Family Stone, Sarah Jessica Parker plays a fashion- conscious New Yorker. But unlike Carrie Bradshaw, Meredith is wound tighter than her impeccable chignon, which explains her minimal black ensembles — all by Narciso Rodriguez. ”We wanted her to look timeless,” says Stone director (and former Coach creative director) Tom Bezucha.

3. Scarlett Johansson’s never had a problem filling out a dress, and yet we were bewitched anew by the stunning simplicity of her Match Point halter, which got kudos from director Woody Allen. ”He loved the shape on her,” says costumer Jill Taylor. ”She had to look like most guys would fall in love with her, but not be overtly sexual.”

4. Also worth mentioning: Téa Leoni’s chic Ray-Bans in Fun With Dick & Jane, Jennifer Aniston’s body-skimming lavender Monique Lhuillier gown in Rumor Has It, and Charlize Theron’s sleek black bob in the otherwise execrable Aeon Flux. Sometimes hair really is everything.

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