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Fashion on Film

International cinema's sartorial splendor

Le Bonheur: Spring & Summer Style


Agnes Varda questions fidelity and happiness in her explosive 1965 film, Le Bonheur. When a (seemingly) good-natured husband and devoted family man becomes involved in a steamy affair with a beautiful postal worker, he believes that happiness -- or bonheur -- is attainable if his two separate loves are combined into a harmonious three-way relationship. This challenging film uses a seductive mix of a picture-perfect family, cheery visuals, and beautiful Mozart soundtrack to mask an undercurrent of selfishness that forever changes the family's idyllic world through a dramatic turn of events. 

Visually, Le Bonheur is reminiscent of a present-day French Connection, Club Monaco, or J. Crew catalog. The characters are dressed in vibrant Spring and Summer attire with bold prints, patterns, and colors. The wife and mistress characters sport cropped pants, cardigans, tops with bold prints, tasteful accessories, and an array of patterned form-fitting sun dresses. The husband/adulterer wears everything from slim-fit tees and skinny jeans, to linen tops and long sleeve oxford shirts. The children are exquisitely styled as well, the daughter in beautiful dresses and the son in colorful overall shorts and tees. 

Fun fact: the family shown on film is depicted by a real-life family of actors. Le Bonheur stars Jean-Claude Drout, Claire Drout, Olivier Drout, Sandrine Drout, and Marie-France Boyer.