In costuming the past, we lose the present

Merrick Morton/AP

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In “Blue Jasmine,” Cate Blanchett’s wardrobe has a central role in telling the story of a woman who (seemingly) has everything before she unravels financially and emotionally. Jasmine clings to her wool bouclé Chanel jackets and Hermes Birkin bags as links to a more stable past. Indeed, it’s those Akris blouses and Valentino cocktail dresses — and more broadly the work of costume designer Suzy Benzinger — that help Jasmine almost reinvent herself.

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