Film: Design & Architecture

Auntie Mame (1958)

Glamorous hints of what’s to come.

“Life is a banquet and most poor suckers are starving to death.” As one of the most, if not the only, influential design films ever created, Auntie Mame is long overdue for a spot on this blog. In a Wall Street Journal story a few years ago, Jonathan Adler was quoted as saying “Watching Auntie Mame is a right of passage for every aspiring interior decorator.” It’s a bona fide cult classic among us design aficionados.

Art director Malcolm Bert and set decorator George James Hopkins created six types of décor—Chinese, Twenties Modern, Postmodern Neoclassical, English, Danish Modern, and East Indian—to parallel the plot’s story lines. And every one of them is a feast for the eyes. Out of a total of 291 captured stills, I chose 115 to showcase here. To see them all, click on the link below. Once there, you have the option to click on any image and start a manual slideshow of the large scale versions of all 115 stills.