Oh! Where can one even begin to explore the dynamics of the timeless beauty that was Suchitra? Starting from her iconic charming smile in the much beloved song, 'ei poth jodi na shesh hoy' to her luscious locks and her enigmatic glare- Suchitra was grace personified.
She was the heart-throb of Bengal and a living breathing legend in cinema, her gait and persona and not to mention her perfect portrayal of whatever character she played, truly intrigued and moved many.
The cinema industry of Dhaka had its fair share of beauty divas portraying iconic looks and absolutely charming élan on screen, and thus marking them to be evergreen. One such beauty diva is Bobita. Who could ever forget how their heart swayed to the melodies of 'fuler kaane bhromor eshe' and their gazes stopped to admire the splendorous beauty Bobita was!
The iconic updo, magnetic feline eyes, the little 'teep', her polka dot saris; her sugary smile, paired with her versatile acting skills; Bobita was truly one of the greatest actresses of Bangladeshi cinema.
Bobita as laden as she was with great looks and utmost poise, she was also a brilliant actor and an iconic fashion diva, whose styles and flair are still followed, and deeply admired by fashionistas and cine lovers.
If Bobita portrayed the beauty of perfection and symmetry, Kobori was the embodiment of effortlessness and romance; the typical girl next door. She had an individual intellectual aura as a crucial part of her charm and wit. Her curious gaze, luscious lips and shiny eyes along with her amazing acting skills stirred many hearts and will continue to do so as she remains a timeless icon; and we find ourselves humming along the tunes of 'tumi je amar kobita' and reminiscing Kobori's magnificence.
Perhaps the grandeur of the Bengali cinema would be absolutely incomplete without the presence of its most loved actress —Shabana!
Clad in graceful saris and timeless grace, she was the embodiment of tradition, portraying all qualities that a Bengali should have.
Admired because of her unparalleled acting skills and her soft and loving nature, she, to this day, remains the quintessential example of eternal elegance.
Who has not thought of wearing that little black dress, with a string of shiny pearls trying to pose like the one and only Holly Golightly in Breakfast at Tiffany's? Or been inspired to get a chic bob by seeing Audrey cut her locks off daringly in Roman holiday?
Hepburn remains a timeless inspiration for young girls till this day. What made Audrey special was her elegance, and her simplicity. She was a lady carrying herself with poise and grace, her elfish charm made many hearts swoon and to this day, remains one of the greatest fashion icons.
Hepburn's makeup, hairstyles, and her famous Givenchy getups are equally iconic, and her strong arched brow, pixie cut, and feline eyeliner could still rule any runway.
When we think about Cleopatra, the first image which comes to our mind is that of Elizabeth Taylor clad in all that gold and glam in her iconic role of Cleopatra (1963). If Hepburn symbolised a girlish charm and playful poise, Taylor was the ultimate seductress; her violet, almond-shaped eyes, creamy skin, pout and raven hair, all combined to make her a force to be reckoned with.
Sultry and mysterious, the talk of her striking beauty still woos her fans.
Perhaps the most quintessential Hollywood icon — known as much for her feminine curves and undeniable sex appeal as her screen presence, the image of Marilyn Monroe standing on a subway grate, with her white halter-neck dress billowing in the wind, has become one of the most favourite scenes for all cinema lovers. Her platinum blonde hair and strawberry lips added to her flirty remarks and dazzling pearly whites made Monroe to be a symbol of both sensuality and sweet vivacity.
Always atop at the list of the world's most beautiful women, and admired as a fashion trendsetter, Grace Kelly graced the pages of glossy magazines with her spectacular smile, enigmatic eyes and flamboyant flairs. With her classic tortoise shell sunglasses, a bold shade of scarlet on her lips, streaks of pearls around her neck, sleek blonde locks and her iconic retro tailored outfits, Kelly was the ultimate icon of class and glorious regality. Being literally married to royalty and the Princess of Monaco, she remains the sweetheart of Hollywood and is a much adored and extremely crucial fashion icon for generations to come.
The solitary beauty personifying glamorous melancholy was none other than the heartthrob of the thirties- Greta Garbo. Whether she was in the public eye or hiding away anonymously, Garbo's influence on fashion and women everywhere was inescapable. The soft, wavy hair was what women desired. The thin, arching eyebrows and hooded black eyes combining severity and allure in one, were to die for. She was glamour and mystery personified.
Lovely, enticing, playful but paired with an unparalleled air of fabulous panache – these are the words that best describe Brigitte Bardot. Hearts stopped upon looking at this curvaceous blonde with the innocent grin. Bardot with her messy blonde updo, dark feline eyes and pouty lips embraced Parisian chic and the carefree look of the southern beaches of France. She's also credited with sparking the trend of knitwear with a wide neck that exposes both shoulders, aptly called "Bardot neckline." In the feminist era of the 1960s, a bold female personality like Bardot was an understandable model to look up to. She was in control of her own sexuality, thoughts and, notably, style; the fashion industry couldn't doll her up, but could give her a voice – a voice that still echoes to this day.
Words that strike you the moment you hear Italy are Sophia Loren, pasta, and colosseum; in that order. With killer curves, Sophia has always been confident, exotic, alluring and elegant all at once. She knew how to dress and did it with great style. She took fashion risks, wore bold eye makeup, red lips and on many occasions changed her hair colour. Her charismatic style paired with her brilliant acting skills onscreen made her one of the most exquisite divas the world of cinema and fashion has ever stumbled upon.
The Marilyn Monroe of Bollywood is none other than Madhubala — a woman of exquisite beauty, a regal gaze and one of the most charismatic smiles on a pair of rose crimson lips — Indian cinema had ever seen. Remember her stunning outfit in 'jab pyaar kiya toh darna kya' from the cinematic wonder that was Mughal-e-Azam? It finds a place in the wardrobes of just about everyone. With charm oozing from every onscreen move that she made, no doubt she was labelled as the 'Venus of the screen'.
A woman of utmost sophistication and piercingly good looks, the style adapted by Zeenat Aman perfectly captures the zeitgeist of the seventies. She was all in for flower power and embodied the hippie chic style, carrying it with spirited panache. Her flared pants and kurtis paired with large gold hoops, tinted frames and rudraksh beads in one of the great cinemas of all time – 'Dum maro dum' proved to be a very loud and widely accepted fashion statement.
She experimented with styles going for bold patterns, neon colours and being a trendsetting diva; interfusing western clothing which portrayed chic minimalism and the glamour and heritage of eastern fabric. Her bohemian look of floral and geometric prints is still rocking this season's runway.
Photo: LS Archive/Sazzad Ibne Sayed