picnic at hanging rock. a 1960s-pretending-to-be-victorian mystery film, chock full of gals with waist-length hair prancing around in frilly white dresses, black stockings, hairbows, and straw hats. this one is definitely a chart-topper for my illustration-inspiration archives.
the opening scenes are my favorite. corsets are tied. flowers are pressed. faces are washed in real rose water. valentines are exchanged. all sorts of unabashed girlish things that make my husband, and my sweet pete, cringe and roll their eyes.
the story takes place on st. valentine's day, where a group of school girls and a professor mysteriously vanish during a picnic at hanging rock. this movie is pretty dang creepy, which i love. the delicate balance between saccharine and spooky is my driving aesthetic, and this movie smacks you over the head with it!
a sunny blonde, wildly carving a cleaver into a supermarket-esque, heart-shaped cake. surreal layers of organ music. girls drifting in-and-out of a poppy-like slumber, as they climb hanging rock. peculiar, voyeuristic men in the distance, spying on the girls' ascent. shrill screams and almost paranormal disappearances. and plot-thickening mystery and misfortune at every turn.
an unsettling movie, to say the least, that leaves the viewer with a whole lot of unanswered questions and some serious head-scratching. personally, i prefer to watch the movie up until the girls disappear and the whole school falls apart at the seams. clue-gathering and crime-solving can be saved for a whole 'nuther day.
besides, i like to keep my valentine's chipper and cheerful, don't you?