What an idiot I was for preferring Goldie Hawn over Diane Keaton in the The First Wives Club. I guess Goldie’s character was the obvious choice — blonde, boobed, kind of drastically a mess in that late-’90s-Kate-Moss way that never really will die (and let’s give the Fitzgeralds a shout out here because I’d argue Zelda is the one who started all that). But I won’t blame young Team Hawn. It takes at least 13 years of life for one to accumulate enough guilt, stress and neurosis to truly appreciate Diane Keaton’s nervous charm that seems to work its way into every character she portrays, and at least 7 more to respect the turtleneck clause she’s worked into all contractual agreements.
Keaton made Annie Hall synonymous with the words “Style Icon” by virtue of being her. A vest on any other woman plus a pair of khakis and a tie could have easily swung to the claims of a T.G.I.Fridays waitress had it not been for DK’s way about her: a slightly awkward body carriage married with a confidence that’s in no way related to arrogance but rather, self-acceptance of one’s weird things and flaws.
She made pants suits a fashionable style choice as opposed to the following: some kind of rebellion; a failure to adhere to red carpet standards; a “borrowed from the boys” sentiment; a statement. The cliché stands here that she wears suits rather than suits wear her. Nor do they define her.
Necks — long, bare, graceful necks have always been a sign of aristocratic beauty, and certainly (unless you’re of the Elizabethan rash-era) never something to cover up. Yet Diane Keaton has made it so that a bare neck looks lost, like it’s missing a best friend. Naked. Afraid? Ok, that’s dramatic, but she does make it a life goal of mine to learn the Tao of Wearing a Turtleneck in the Summer Without Sweating.
Diane Keaton is one of those people who wears a hat, and suddenly you need a hat. A belt — and suddenly you’re properly cinching your trousers. She’s probably one of those people who can say the same thing you “literally just said,” that everyone ignored, and yet everyone internalizes her remarks with the reverence of a royal bow.
But you wouldn’t even be mad about it. You’d totally get it.
Because you get her. Finally.
What a woman. What an icon.