1. Reese Witherspoon and Gwyneth Paltrow
Absolutely fabulous. Faultless. Stunning. Who would have guessed that Reese and Gwyneth would be head and shoulders above the rest? Last year, Reese looked much too prim, proper and “ladylike” in a second-rate vintage Dior gown, but this year she came out in one of Olivier Theyskens debut dresses for Nina Ricci looking ferociously sexy and undeniably classy at the same time. Don’t try this at home! Gwyneth has lately been a fashion victim, so who could have guessed that she would suddenly make a 180-degree turn and show up in this beautiful Zac Pozen gown looking both completely modern and evoking Veronica Lake at the same time. If you want to confirm that both of them were spot on, compare them to Nicole Kidman who just didn’t get the gown, the makeup or the hair right.( That gown needed an updo, not her overlong distracting hair. The bow was distracting enough.)
Slideshow: Red Carpet Photos
The real fashion news of the night can be summed up this way. Two young designers, Theyskens and Pozen, upstaged the more high profile red carpet warhorses, especially Armani, Valentino, and Wang, all of whom fared poorly this year.
3. Jada Pinkett Smith
The color of this Carolina Hererra gown is beautifully suited to her skintone and the shape is remarkably constructed without being overwhelming (memo to Penelope Cruz). Keisha Whitaker looked beautiful in a similarly colored gown.
In the red dress on stage (in that instant classic production number), not the mint Armani pageant gown she arrived in. What a difference a dress makes!
5. Rinko Kikuchi
This dress made up for the preposterous Chanel disaster she wore to the Golden Globes.
6. Penelope Cruz
I’m conflicted about this choice, because she looks undeniably striking but there are also many styling mistakes to point out. First of all, the color of the Versace dress makes her glow but the poufy overworked lower half of the dress is too much. Her makeup is flawless but her hairstyle, while technically brilliant, is completely unsuited to the shape of her face. It makes her look elflike, her eyebrows look odd and her ears look enormous. But she looks undeniably striking…….go figure!
Why do some men look perfect in a tuxedo while others don’t? There are really two rules one needs to follow. First, it should fit you (almost like a second skin). Secondly, the width of your tie, collar and lapel should be perfectly proportional.
1. George Clooney
2. Peter Sarsgaard
3. Greg Kinnear
4. Jerry Sienfeld
5. Mark Wahlberg
….and now for the WORST
I chose these women from a long list of poorly dressed celebrities and singled them out because, while they have the pick of any dress and any designer in the world, they still got it wrong.
1. Cameron Diaz
Plain and simple, the dress is ugly.
2. Jennifer Hudson
The biggest disappointment of the night. The shape of the Oscar de la Renta gown was flattering as was the color. But there were better dresses out there. For one, the Vera Wang gown worn (awkwardly) by Jodi Foster would have looked much better on Jennifer. The real problem (aside from the python bolero), and it was a glaring problem, was the unflattering hair, makeup and jewelry. She looked like a tired bridesmaid at a Ramada ballroom.
3. Meryl Streep
She looked great at the Golden Globes but showed up in a Prada Holloween costume. What the devil?
4. Cate Blanchett
Proof positive that just because a dress is Armani couture does not mean it is flattering on any figure. A column dress should not taper at the bottom. Design 101.
5. Jennifer Lopez
Why would you wear a dress that makes your breasts look as if they are hanging in a used condom? A very unflattering bustline on a dress whose upper half makes no design sense whatsoever. The gown was by Marchesa but Mark Wahlberg’s wife had on the company’s best effort. On the bright side, her hair and makeup was gorgeous.
6. Ann Hathaway and Kirsten Dunst
If you’re going to improvise or riff on a tuxedo, you better have impecable taste and look twice in the mirror. These guys failed on both counts.
1. Quincy Jones
2. Philip Seymour Hoffman
3. Robert Downey Jr.
4. Eddie Murphy
5. Gael Garcia Bernal
Tom Kolovos for www.TheBestDressedList.com