Watches that shaped cinema - Part 2
Continuing our Journey throughout the history of watches on the big screen, we cast an eye on timepieces that act as metaphores for the wearers themselves, encapsulating and therefore depicting internal and external struggle. We reach for the stars as we wander across real world events and adventures beyond our imagination, as wristwatches become just as iconic as the films they feature in.
7. Ghostbusters - Seiko M516 Voice Note
Yes we know this watch is just undeniably ugly, but we also want to give an ugly duckling its time to shine as the Seiko M516 Voice Note is as iconic as it is hard to look at. While definitly not being regarded as one of horology's most appealing designs, this model boasts a nostalgic charm as the question arises "Did we really thought the future would look like this?".
Besides the ability of recording rather poor audio, the watch also features a stopwatch and backlight. It's not what we would usually consider to be a pioneering watch. That said, it boasts some less obvious details such as the casing and strap being forged out of carbon fibre plastic and stainless steel, respectively. That is a pretty ahead-of-its-time design decision for a watch released in the early ’80s.
8. Aliens - Seiko Guigiaro 7A28-7000
Originally a collaboration between Seiko and the legendary Italian car designer Giorgetto Guigiaro, who is responsible for the creation of the VW Golf, the Fiat Pand, the Maserati Ghibli and the DeLorean, this Seiko was chosen by noted watch buff James Cameron to be worn by Sigourney Weaver’s Ripley on her return to face the Alien threat yet again. While the journey of everyone involved back to planet LV-426 may not be best described as "fun", the watch, with its strange, blocky protrusion that contains the chronograph's pushers, is definitely a piece of thrilling automotive-inspired design and serves as a utilitarian bit of sci-fi kit during Ripley’s fight for survival by acting as a symbol for the characters struggle among monsters and soldiers, resulting in her becoming possibly the strongest depicition of a heroine ever put to screen .
9. Scarface - Omega La Magique
Worn by Al Pacino’s iconic anti-hero, Tony Montana, the watch embodies the character’s iconoclastic approach to the criminal underworld as he does not play by anyone’s rules but his own and is willing to do anything to reach the top. And stay there. The La Magique also gets a considerable amount of time on-screen, most noticeably when Tony Montana, one arm in a sling and blood splattering his otherwise pristine blue suit, utters his infamous “every dog has its day” line.
Utterly unique, this model features a circular face framed by a square case and boasts minimalist markings. If you want a watch that manages to achieve something completely different, look no further than the Omega La Magique.
10. The Dark Knight Trilogy - Jager-LeCoultre Reverso
On first glance, you would probably think that this classic would adorn the wrist of Gotham's district attorney Harvey Dent who under tragic circumstances became the conflicted two-face after his noble fight for justice in the second installment of Christopher Nolan's acclaimed trilogy, becoming trapped to duality as his moral compass got bound to the two sides of a coin.
But just as the scarred villain itself acts as a metaphor for the inner conflict between Batman and Bruce Wayne playing out inside Christian Bale's character, the wristwatch encircling the heroes watch throughout the three films symblises his struggle to combine his private life and crime fighting as his physical health and relationships threaten to deteriorate.
The Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso boasts a swivelling case that allows you to flip the watch’s face, initially designed to protect the wearers timepiece while playing polo, and is considered to be a design icon that perfectly encapsulates the inner trials of the Caped Crusader.
11. Apollo 13 - Omega Speedmaster
What could be more fitting for a movie about the thirteenth Apollo mission than the only NASA-certified watch suitable for space missions in 1965? Originally designed as a racing chronograph, it was worn during the first American spacewalk and by Buzz Aldrin when he first stepped foot on the moon. Even though a handful of other watches were since accredited by NASA and therefore recommended for space missions, the Omega Speedmaster remains the only timepiece to be permitted for so called "Extravehicular Activity", such as spacewalks and external repairs to stations.
While this alone would have definitly ensured the Omega Speedmasters place in the heart of watch lovers and space enthusiasts alike, its appearence in the 1995's smash-hit cemented its legacy by featuring it on the big screen.
12. Interstellar - Hamilton Khaki Pilot Day Date
While many of the movies on this list have interwoven the concept of time directly into their plot by reminding us of the urgency and stakes at any given time, we are not sure any incorporated a watch as a plot point as brilliantly as our last entry on this list. A masterclass of boundless amazement upon the spectacular digitally-enhanced setpieces paired with some of the most beautiful portrail of emotions ever brought to the screen, a little wristwatch acts as the saving grace inmidst a sphere beyond our imagination. By trancending space and time, the Hamilton Khaki Field "Murph" brings this film to its heart-wrenching close.
But this timepiece, initially made exclusively for the film, is not the only iconic watch being featured in Nolan's space adventure. The Hamilton Khaki Pilot Day Date, adorning Matthew McConaughey's wrist throughout his journey, acts as a constant symbol of his battle against the clock as the colossal soundtrack of Hans Zimmer reminds us of every precious day that passes on earth.
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