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STYLE AND CULTURE

5 CLASSIC CINEMATIC CHUNKY KNITS

By Chris Sayer, 16 February 2019

The red-hot glow coming from your radiator is a decent sign that big knit weather is still upon us. And, to ensure you’re getting the very best out of your thick woolly pully, we’ve put together this: a shotgun guide to the best examples of big knits in stylish cinematic hits. So take note and step outside feeling hella warm – and looking hella cool…

chunky knit jumpers in film

Picture: Rex

Elvis Presley, Jailhouse Rock

If ever there was a justification for spending big on a chunky knit, this is it. Elvis hip-thrusted his way through Jailhouse Rock – his most famous big-screen moment – more than six decades ago now, and yet the funnel-neck jumper he wears in it still holds up. And the cosy winner deserves a spot in your rotation in 2019 for all the same reasons it did back in your grandad’s day – it’s a layering supremo under anything from a blazer to a denim jacket, will work just as well in the workplace as it will in the pub, and is all about that all-day sofa lifestyle, too. A trusty workhorse for work and play, for sure. 

chunky knit jumpers in film

Picture: Rex

Jack Nicholson, The Shining

While caretaker-turned-killer Jack Torrance is busy chopping through doors and descending into a fiendishly unpredictable state, his wardrobe’s doing quite the opposite. A chunky ribbed knit like this is a dependable go-to staple in any cold-weather wardrobe and, in a muted colour, is definitely one of the good guys when it comes to acting as a perfect canvas for almost any winter jacket

chunky knit jumpers in film

Picture: Rex

Pretty much everyone, Dunkirk

Ooof, here’s a masterclass is wearing woollen goods if ever we saw one. From the superb V-neck Fair Isle sweater vest on Barry Keoghan’s George and the hefty military jacket over a classic, off-white, nautical knit on Kenneth Branagh’s Commander Bolton, to the shawl-neck sweat on Mark Rylance’s Mr Dawson, and the RAF-tastic pairing of a heavyweight roll-neck with a shearling pilot’s jacket sported by Tom Hardy’s Spitfire maverick Farrier, it’s an absolute knit hit parade. But for the most 1940-meets-2019 bit of knit kit on show, we turn to this bang-on-trend burgundy fisherman’s sweater, as modelled by sailor’s son Peter (Tom Glynn-Carney). 

chunky knit jumpers in film

Picture: Getty Images

Steve McQueen, The Thomas Crown Affair (and Le Mans)

Is Thomas Crown cinema’s most stylish anti-hero? The votes are in and… yes, sure seems that way. Steve McQueen’s lovable bank robber ticks all the boxes that make him a staple atop every well-dressed-man list ever, with everything from sharp suits to classic Persol sunglasses making an appearance. But of the lot, the single standout item has to be the vintage Aran cable knit – a garm that’s seen many a trend come and go, while remaining totally timeless and super stylish. McQueen himself liked the jumper so much he apparently pinched it from the set, and was proudly rocking it in between takes on motor-racing epic Le Mans, three years later.

chunky knit jumpers in film

Picture: Rex

Alec Secareanu, God’s Own Country

As shouts go, this is a big one: world-famous fash mag Vogue not only called the rustic knit on poverty-stricken Romanian farmer Gheorghe the ‘Best Jumper of the Year’ at the end of 2018, but also that of any year. Ever. And yes, it sure is a winner. Scores of adoring movie reviews made room to hype the knit, and droves of fashion-hungry fans took to social media to sing its praises, too. If it wasn’t considered weird to give Best Supporting Role to a piece of clothing, this thing would have probably walked away from awards season clutching some serious gold.

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