If you haven’t paid much attention to the fierce competition raging in the Oscar race for “Highest Pants,” don’t worry—we’re here to break down the contenders for you. The creased slacks designed by Casey Storm in Her were given a lot of attention because of their extra-long zippers and hidden buttons, but they were not, in fact, the only high-waisted pants on screens this Oscar year. Below you’ll find the four films vying for the coveted trophy, in the order that we think is least to most likely to win (this completely trivial category that we made up). Cast your vote in the comments at the bottom of the post. Best of luck to all.
DALLAS BUYERS CLUB
Stills from ’Dallas Buyers Club.’
Photos: Truth Entertainment
Matthew McConaughey lost over 40 pounds to play the role of Ron Woodroff in Dallas Buyers Club. His character continues to lose weight throughout the film due to his battle with AIDS, so a belt was necessary to hold up the jeans on his wiry frame. From the front, the pants don’t look all that high, but from the back, you can see how they’re cinched, sitting at the top of his waist. On the waistline spectrum (your grandfather to Britney Spears in the “I’m A Slave 4 U” video), they could sit higher, but they could also definitely be lower.
12 YEARS A SLAVE
Stills from ’12 Years a Slave.’
Photo: Summit Entertainment
Sure, fashion was different in 1841, when 12 Years a Slave takes place, but that doesn’t put it out of the running for “Highest Pants.” As you know, fashion is constantly in flux—we’ve gotta take all periods into account. Both Michael Fassbender and Chiwetel Ejiofor wear pants that go way over their bellybuttons—granted, suspenders tend to have that effect.
Stills from ’Her.’
Photo: Annapurna Pictures
Spike Jonze’s Her, which takes place in the near future, features high pants galore. You get a pair and you get a pair and you get a pair! They’re the fashion of the future, people. Joaquin Phoenix and many of the other characters embrace this look with open arms, tucking their shirts in and letting their 45-inch zippers live free, out in the open. Just how high the pants are, though, is totally exaggerated by the lengthy zippers and flat-fronted fly. Like, I’m 70% sure Phoenix’s navel could still peek over that waistband. This Academy (which consists of just me) does not award points for optical illusions.
THE WOLF OF WALL STREET
Stills from ’The Wolf Of Wall Street.’
Photo: Red Granite Pictures
The competition between The Wolf Of Wall Street and Her is palpable, but ol’ Wolfy grabs the “Highest Pants” title. There are a few reasons (the film is set in a time that has already happened IRL not some fantasy land where computers sound like Scarlett Johansson, I <3 Leo 4ever, etc.) that gives it the lead, but the #1 factor in this decision was science. LOOK AT THE HEIGHT OF THOSE PANTS. Suspenders make another appearance on Jonah Hill (popular in 1841 and the 1990s, natch), but the guy in the orange pants (“Sea Otter” aka Henry Zebrowski) has them hiked way up there, relatively unassisted. That’s a lot of pant and not much torso.
If you’re interested in seeing real awards being doled out to these movies and more, watch the Oscars on Sunday on ABC, starting at 7. We’ll be kicking off our live coverage once the red carpet gets underway, so stick with us for everything Oscars (and/or high-waisted)!