Casinos & suits. They’re the true match made in heaven. There’s just something about that perfectly tailored Italian suit paired alongside a roulette table. Or a cufflink beaming at the opponents when you have that royal flush. It might sound like going on a leg, but casino attires are probably the most dapper men are going to look. We’re sure you won’t disagree.
Given this, let us delve deeper into what makes the perfect attire for our favorite characters on the strip – man or woman, villain or hero.
6. Robert De Niro in Casino
Maybe the color palette does not quite suit your taste, but certainly, a lot of attention was paid by the team of wardrobe assistants in dressing our favorite Italian mobster down in Scorsese’s Las Vegas-set classic. Perhaps that is because the costume budget was a whopping $1 million for the film. That enabled a cool 45 suits to be worn by Rothstein, the character portrayed by De Niro in the movie.
As costume designer Rita Ryack explains, they were an important part of the character development, hence the justification for all the detail lathered in this department.
“As Rothstein acquired more power in the gaming industry, his look became more flamboyant.” She even justifies the punchy pattern: “Though the loud print linings in De Niro’s jackets were never on display, it was important for an actor like him to know that they were next to his skin. No one else could pull off audacious clothing like that without appearing cartoonish. De Niro still seemed sexy and dangerous.”
5. Humphrey Bogart in Casablanca
While casinos are not technically a major a theme in one of the greatest films of the century as they are in other films on this list, Bogart’s attire in Casablanca nonetheless deserves some attention for how iconic it has become.
While perhaps not the ideal choice for a model to display a new line for the upcoming Spring catalogue, this dude knew how to wear a suit, and wear it well. Time and time again, he pulls off the double-breasted jacket with ease, making it a wardrobe staple over the course of his cinematic career. Furthermore, his choice of high-waisted slacks became a career staple whilst bearing out an influence in real world fashion choices for men all over the country. Pictured here with his iconic bowtie and white dinner jacket is perhaps how he will best be remembered.
4. Sean Connery in Goldfinger
No doubt about it, this is definitive Connery. The one many consider being the best to ever have played the cunning, charming, and extremely dangerous British spy on the silver screen absolutely rocks the grey and white plaid three-piece.
Of course, it would not be the famous Scotsman without the now timeless two button jacket, so tailored to perfection for actor. For someone playing a physical and romantic role, the suit is the perfect accompaniment for the charmed spy.
It has inspired costume in many other films, and even the finest detail is noted, including the bottom button of a waistcoat being undone as is custom dating back to the days of King Edward VII.
3. Daniel Craig in Casino Royale
Daniel Craig absolutely nails the role of Bond in the modern era of the character, right down to how he wears the spy attire. In Casino Royale, the British superspy dons a Brioni dinner jacket with a single button at the front, a grosgrain silk-trimmed peak lapel. It has four buttons on the cuffs, as well – the signature of a bespoke suit.
This choice is classic for wearing into a casino. It is not too flashy or overstated, as you do not want to draw too much attention and too many eyeballs to yourself. At the same time, it remains elegant and minimalist in a modern way.
In Casino Royale, Craig calmly wins a super high stakes poker tournament in attempting to empty the pockets of terrorist banker Le Chiffre. 40 minutes of edgy poker footage later and we the audience are as seduced by the game of poker as many of the superspy’s mistresses are by him.
He’s helped Bond become the classic casino character. A figure every man wishes to be. To dress in a tux without looking like a waiter. To sip a Martini, shaken not stirred, in style. To visit the casino and actually understand the terminology without having to Google it or ask the croupier to repeat what they’ve just said. It’s a dream we all have. Don the suit, get online to learn the lingo, and order the signature Bond cocktail, and who knows, you may end up with a Bond girl on your arm too.
2. Brad Pitt in Ocean’s 11
There are a number of excellent choices to elect from in this action comedy film starring the likes of not just Mr. Pitt, but George Clooney, Don Cheadle, and Matt Damon. All are sex symbols in their own right, and all know how to professionally style in any variety of suit they don. Yet, the standout is the one rocked by the character of Rusty Ryan himself.
On the one hand, yes, it is possible to criticize the dated early 2000s look of a non-form fitting jacket along with the higher-than-usual waist in the way he wears his trousers. But this is just part of the setting of the film, the place and time in which the story occurs; indeed, that kind of fashion is part of the story. Further, you have to really try as a costume designer to make Brad Pitt not rock the socks off of whatever he happens to have on his body; he pulls off the look with as much authority and suave as you would expect from a high-stake casino robber.
1. Lana Wood in Diamonds are Forever
We would be remiss to leave out this brief, but memorable, appearance by Lana Wood as Plenty O’Toole in Diamonds Are Forever. Complete with the classic Bond girl pun-filled name, Ms. Wood plays the craps table in a gorgeous, cleavage-bearing dress that belies a heart-stopping figure. The low-cut purple silk-jersey undoubtedly screams glamour; this image is only enhanced by a pendant placed ever so carefully to highlight her voluptuousness. It is impossible not to notice her sensuality, as it effortlessly drips forth from the celluloid, imprinting a lasting image on the minds of its viewers. Alas, her place in the plot does not last all that long: they go on a date following the craps scene, but plans to go back to her hotel room inevitably go down the drain when Bond is attacked and she is thrown out the window rather unceremoniously.
Whether or not you have an encyclopedic knowledge of poker rules and lingo down by heart, almost anyone can appreciate timeless essentials like a well-pressed, tailored suit or a stunning dress well-worn in an institution of gambling. Like we said earlier, there is something about it that just works; it looks classy as hell when pulled off correctly. There is a reason there exists the iconic imagery of Sean Connery in Dr. No in our collective imaginations, even 50 years after the release of the film.