Advanced Style: The Documentary

November 11th, 2014


Last week The SC attended Advanced Style: The Documentary HERE at the SIE Film Center HERE in Denver, along with a crowd of people who had been waiting for this event since the film came out months ago.  After touring across the globe, the US opening took place in NYC in September.  Having met four of the cast members, I was thrilled to be in the audience for the Denver screening.

The stars of the film, from left to right above, are six stunning and stylish NYC women between the ages of 62 and 93 at the time the film was made:

Debra Rapoport, Jacquie Tajah Murdock, Ilona Royce Smithkin, Tziporah Salamon, Joyce Carpati, and Lynn Dell Cohen


I have been waiting to see the film since I first heard about it on Ari Seth Cohen’s revolutionary blog Advanced Style HERE.  The documentary was produced by Ari Seth Cohen and directed by Lina Plioplyte, was three years in the making, and was funded with a Kickstarter campaign.

As per the Advanced Style DVD cover, “Acclaimed street style photographer Ari Seth Cohen and director Lina Pliopltye dive into the personal lives of NYC’s most fashionable seniors.  In an industry obsessed with youth, these older women dispel conventional ideas about beauty and aging and prove that with age comes grace, confidence and unimagined opportunities.”


The SIE Film Center is the home to the Denver Film Society and Women + Film HERE, a year-round program in Denver showcasing films by, for, and about women. The documentary was showcased at the film center for one night only.

Director and Producer

Above is a photo of Ari Seth Cohen and Lina Plioplyte, who can only be described as brilliant and visionary, at the Advanced Style premier at Toronto’s Hot Docs Film Festival in April.  The photograph was taken by my blogger friend Shelley of  Forest City Fashionista HERE.  Shelley’s review of the film is thorough, beautifully written and not to be missed.

Lina was skyped in on the big screen following the film in Denver, for a spirited Q&A. The audience was openly touched and inspired, which has been the response of all who have been captivated by its spirit.

photo 2

The beauty of the film’s powerful reach was revealed when my dear friend Carl, who I’ve known since the 70’s and who lives in NYC just blocks from where the US premier was held, attended the screening.  He sent photos of the event to me by email when I was in Europe in September.  The above photo was taken by Carl, accompanied by his partner Bill, which beautifully captures the thrill of the moment.


This photo of Carl with Debra Rapoport, beautiful artist and hat designer, displays his enthusiasm and appreciation for the documentary.  I had a similar expression on my face during the screening, and I saw many around me with smiles and some with tears.


Photo by Daniel

I had the pleasure of attending the screening with the iconic Denver artist Susan Wick HERE, who has been a friend of Debra Rapoport’s for decades.  I met Susan through Debra, and always enjoy her wisdom, her art, her style and beauty, and her dazzling smile, which never fails to light up a room.

Susan was featured on Advanced Style HERE with Debra and another friend, Mary Winder Baker. In the 1970’s they worked together as a performance group and have a long and beautiful history of shared friendship.


Photo by The SC

The audience was composed of beautifully dressed women and handsomely attired men, which included the always extraordinary and gorgeous, from left, Carolyn, Diana and Juana.  Carolyn was the proprietor of a popular clothing/jewelry boutique in Denver by the name of Tapestry, which is missed by many to this day.  Diana was The SC’s photographer in past years, and proudly wears a pin that she thrifted on the way to the film and is carrying a bag from the Tattered Cover HERE, a nationally known independent bookstore located in the Lowenstein Cultureplex across from the SIE Theatre.


Photo by The SC

Juana is the President of Mestiza Leadership International HERE, and she should really wear the blue gloves and black beret more often!


In celebration of the film, I wore the leopard print headpiece featured on November’s Hat Attack HERE and a dress that I discovered in Nice at the Fashion Gallery, a boutique which had chandeliers hanging from every inch of its ceiling.  I had no idea until a few days before the screening that the two would flow together.


All accessories were estate sale finds or gifted.  Composing this ensemble involved combining new treasures from my European adventure with Mr. J and pieces from my collections, mostly recycled and dearly loved.


Photos by Daniel

The Advanced Style Documentary is a brilliant celebration of aging and style.  What did it mean for me?  How can I put words to the fact that a movement to honor and support older people has changed my life?  That I wouldn’t have launched my blog without the example of Advanced Style.  That self-expression and style are healing and always evolving.  That visibility, creativity and self acceptance are life enhancing.  That diversity of style and living life to the fullest enriches everyone.  That supporting and encouraging one another in the aging process is far superior to competition and isolation. That connecting with like-minded people of every generation is energizing and thereby extends life. That this era of my life is filled with growth and marvelous new experiences.  That style is art and is fun to express and share.  I feel more alive when I do!

So thank you, Ari and Lina, for bringing this film to fruition.  It is a spectacular piece of work and is appreciated by myself and many, for its message and its beauty.  It’s exciting to wonder about what’s next!!!

The Advanced Style DVD is now available with lots of bonus footage!!!

22 Responses to “Advanced Style: The Documentary”

  1. Mercedes de Marchena

    Judith, you are priceless!!! Love the outfit, the grace with which you wear it. Will look this film up, sounds fabulous. Thanks for sharing.

  2. Suz

    You look divine. I don’t think I have ever said this on-line but I am the same age as you. I wish I had the style you have. Style is a hit or miss thing with me. Sometimes I hit it on the head and often I miss it by a mile.

  3. Patti

    Your dress and accessories (that purse!) are extraordinary, Judith. Thanks for this reporting; I look forward to seeing the marvelous film.

  4. Suzanne

    I really MUST see this film. I don’t like to cry at movies though and I feel this might make me.

    Your dress is spectacular! WOW! Great choice. The whole ensemble is so eclectic and colourful. Gorgeous Autumn colours.


  5. Christine Garcia

    I was at the film and was awestruck with all of the beautiful, creative people that came out. What a great event!

    Thank you Style Crone, for being a beacon for the rest of us locals.

  6. Jill

    Your French finds together with that wonderful bag all look so stunning on you.
    I saw the film about 3 weeks ago with my sister , we were both so touched by the sentiments expressed by all the ladies but also with their joy for living each day to the full, to say nothing of their incredible wardrobes. I urge everyone who can to see the film.

  7. LA Contessa

    I noticed your OUTFIT right away!WOW………….it is P E R F E C T I O N!
    I have met one of these ladies in PALM SPRINGS and it was defiantly a THRILL for me!I look forward to one day seeing the movie………….thanks for the RE-CAP!

  8. Greetje Kamminga

    I must see that film!
    And you look so good. What a brilliant buy, that dress. Indeed the hat foes so well with it. I envy your skills of finding these pieces and creating such a good outfit. I am rotally in love with the dress and the headpiece, but what took my breath was the bag. Oh my goodness, what a devine example of a bag….. Sigh.


    Magic attire for a magi event, ahhhhhhhhhhhhhh
    We must definitely meet soon
    Tons of love.

  10. Claire

    A stunning and cleverly matched outfit! Thank you for the film information, I will try and seek it out over here.

  11. Vix

    You look wonderful from head to toe. That bag is sublime and the colours and prints in your outfit just sing.
    It sounds like a wonderfully uplifting film. xxx

  12. Vanessa Shaw

    I love your philosophy about style. Never thought of it as being another form of art but you are absolutely right. Now that I have the wherewithal to indulge myself, I am having a ball. Even on those days when I don’t feel like dressing I still wrap my hair with a colorful turban, put on my best red lipstick and a pair of sexy shades and I’m ready to get on with life. Keep stepping sistah’s!

  13. Sylvia @ 40PlusStyle

    What an inspiring post Judith. I loved reading about what the film meant to you! You looked absolutely stunning!

  14. Alexis Rubin

    You did it! Great post. I think this is one of my favorite of your ensembles! Amazing!

  15. Pam@over50feeling40

    I cannot wait to see this, Judith! All of you inspire me so much…you look awesome as always!

  16. Mary James

    You look absolutely smashing, and were one of the ADVANCE STYLE ladies too. What a fabulous evening it had to have been and I am so envious.

    Thank you so much for sharing your excitement and that of others as well.

  17. pao

    Oh Judith, you look so exotically glamorous and a perfect tribute to Advanced Style: the Film. I bet people were asking for autographs. Do they do that anymore? Or is it more a photo of you and them on their phone? Wow, and how very cool to have a film center devoted to showing films for, by and about women throughout the year. I saw the film when it came to Chicago for a week and was so excited about it. I’ve yet to post, but you’ve done it so well, I need not. Thanks Judith, it was thrilling and Advanced Style has changed my life, as you have, truly.

  18. Anne-Marie Bruun

    I wish I could have been there. It must be very exciting.
    It is quite unique what Ari Seth Cohen has done. And also for me it was the beginning of my blog, and it was through Advanced Style I found you dear.
    It is very beautiful your purchase in Nice. You look so fantastic. You always find the most beautiful pieces to put together.

  19. Shelley

    I wouldn’t have made marvelous friends like you and Debra if it wasn’t for Ari’s blog, so it will always have a place in my heart, and I was so glad the film was able to be made (I’m waiting for my copy of the DVD). You and your friends look divine (that bag is absolutely “Squee-worthy”) and I think Juana should wear that beret and those gorgeous gloves more often.

  20. Juana Bordas

    So happy to have seen this inspiring film with such beautiful women. Thanks to Judith for reminding us of the power and presence of timeless women

  21. cherie james

    Your post is so great! I am familiar with Advanced Style – love how colorful all the ladies are. It must have been a thrill to be there. And, your outfit – I love that you mixed the leopard with the multi-pattern dress and then the topper is that yellow handbag with the leopard touches. Fabulous!!!!


  22. Aya in Couturgatory

    Every person photographed here is so vivacious and clearly bursting with great presence, personality, and artistry. I love it.

    You are as always a work of art, Judith. I am entranced by your new dress and that gorgeous draped wrap.

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