French existential author type Albert Camus might have learned everything about life from football, but us, we like to get our life tips from the movies.
So when it comes to getting ready, making ourselves look presentable and generally preening, we look towards Hollywood for guidance.
Here are our Top 16 most inspiring grooming scenes at the movies. Smelling fresh and looking a million dollars guaranteed. Plus some murder. And some surreal Scouse humour.
(Couldn't find Taxi Driver head shave on YouTube, annoyingly)
If your trip to the barbers doesn’t involve a surreal to-and-fro singing game, a heavy dose of amateur dramatics and starring into the eyes of a man who appears to have a skunk atop his barnet, then may we be so bold to suggest you look into obtaining a new barber forthwith. Explore your options, grooming should be a life-enriching experience.
Saturday Night Fever
The daddy, granddaddy and even great granddaddy of getting ready scenes. Who hasn’t busted a few Tony Manero moves – a sly hip wiggle, copious combing of the hair, those admiring torso glances – while getting ready to hit the discotheques of some provincial town? All Saturday nights should begin this way. Right down to the black Y-fronts and gold medallions.
Some think Anchorman to be an OTT pastiche of out-dated male chauvinism. These people are ill-informed fools. Anchorman accurately captures a time when men were men and women were, well, let’s not go there at this time. Every man should musk up with a scent that is illegal in nine countries – how else can you be sure of 60 per cent of the time it working every time? Exactly. Sex Panther is where it’s at. Now let’s go and make this little kitty purr.
Like Patrick Bateman we wholly applaud the ideology of taking care of oneself. That’s why every morning we follow the upstanding Mr Bateman’s impeccable grooming routine down to the last exfoliating gel scrub. How else would we have obtained such a position of such significance and power? Certainly ain’t by hacking our friends and prostitutes to death. Honest.
Be good at something; become famous; endorse aftershave; have a jumped-up director think you’re a laughing stock. Such is the career path for the one and only Italian Stallion, Rocky Balboa. The Beast might make you smell like a jungle rat (hang on, is that a good thing?), surround your face with class and turn the women (woman?) in your life into beasts, but if you can’t read good, just keep away from the commercial.
The Lost Boys
At the end of a long, tiring day, nothing beats a good soak and lather up in the tub. Oops, sorry, wrong website. Ahem. But the restorative powers of a good sing-song in the bath (Clarence ‘Frogman’ Henry’s Ain’t Got A Home since you didn’t ask), while sculpting your hair into an adorable quiff are proven. Just make sure your brother ain’t a goddam shit-sucking vampire.
Coming To America
In the real world a barber shop where the barber cut not an inch of hair from your head while gassing with patrons who don’t seem to have moved since 1962 wouldn’t last a week. It’s all about efficiency, you see. In Tinseltown, however, it’s the craziest and coolest joint in town. Oh, to discuss the finer points of pugilism all day while not having your hair trimmed. And, by the way, Babomomebeo is spot on: Cuba Gooding Jr did kill it in this scene. We bow down at the man’s skills.
The Great Dictator
As John Travolta and Corey Haim have already demonstrated in this list, there’s a link between getting ready and listening to some choice sonic tonics. And if further proof were needed of this grooming/musical nexus, then Charlie Chaplin provides it here. The customer might seem perturbed, but what a sterling job the Hollywood renegade does accompanied by a bit of Brahms. Magical.
There’s Something About Mary
It’s time to fess up – even when we’ve run out of hair gel, pomade, styling wax, putty and whatever other hair product you dare to think of, we have never, not once, been tempted to use, you know what as a substitute. Wonder if it works? No, don’t even go there. That path can only lead to madness. And perhaps a date in front of a judge. And not a judge in a brothel.
Full Metal Jacket
We know hairdressers who take over an hour to trim a measly inch of hair such is their fastidious attention to detail – and their predilection for a good gas. If, however, you want your haircut to be functional, low maintenance and take about 37 seconds, join the US Marines. Your hair (and your personality) is gone in the blink of an eye.
What kid doesn’t want to mess about in the bathroom pretending to be their dad? Using their dad’s deodorant, combing their hair, applying a liberal dose of aftershave to their tender visage. Hmmm, that last application doesn’t half smart though.
North By Northwest
In days of yore, a man had to either be clean shaven or sport a hirsute beard – that inbetween stage of bristly whiskers was not part of the bargain. Cary Grant would have known this better than most, hence his desire to use whatever was around to shave. In this case Eva Marie Sant’s mini razor. Some nice comedic touches too.
Being neither a cowboy with sandpaper rough stubble and never having had a shave using one of those antique razor knives we can’t claim with authority that this meeting doesn’t result in an annoying din. But we’re pretty sure relieving Dean Martin of his facial fuzz shouldn’t be so loud. We reckon John Wayne was supplying some nifty sound affects.
A Hard Day’s Night
While John Lennon indulges some Anglo Teutonic schtick in his bubble bath, George Harrison demonstrates how to use a disposable razor using a bathroom mirror. We’re not sure what lessons can be learned from such surreal oddness, but we can advise not to use mind-altering substances when grooming.
We realise that hunting a Predator might send you a bit doolally, but, wow there, Mac Eliot, steady on. And closer and you’ll be shaving your eye out. No wonder Apollo Creed (ok, George Dillon) looks concerned. And is that a Mach-III razor he’s using? Geddit? Mac Eliot? Mach-III?
Kevin & Perry Go Large
Much as we love them, there are approximately 1,785 reasons why we’re glad we’re not women. Here are another six or seven to add to that growing list. Even though men have embraced the metrosexual revolution with gusto, be praised that we don’t have to go through this rigmarole every time we want to go out of an evening.