I’m not sure why July became “tragic blonde month,” but I figured we might as well pile on Jayne Mansfield while we’re at it. Also, I haven’t visited the greatest decade in a while, so the CBS television movie The Jayne Mansfield Story brings us back to 1980 just in time. Since it earned a place on “The 100 Most Enjoyably Bad Movies Ever Made” list, it should fit in nicely here.
The Jayne Mansfield Story – The Film
This is a good choice if you’re looking for a tragic blonde biopic without the baggage. Since it’s a made-for-TV movie from the 1980s, you don’t have to concern yourself with any particularly edgy content. It follows the rise to stardom of Jayne Mansfield, a “blonde bombshell” of the ‘50s, to her eventual demise in a car accident in 1967.
The Jayne Mansfield Story – The Furs
And it is there we start since the filmmakers decided they weren’t down for spoilers. Jayne (Loni Anderson, ‘80s blonde bombshell) chats with her husband on the phone while wearing a fairly cheap-looking jacket. It may be faux, but it is difficult to tell. Then, it’s off to her last car ride.
The rest of the film is a flashback to her rise to stardom, where we will see Loni as Janye wearing several notable furs. We start slowly with a short-haired fur coat, possibly a mink, but maybe an ermine coat used in a classic “fur coat, sexy knickers” shot.
Like all relics of television past, we’re denied clean-cut 4k footage, which would better allow an analysis of what fur is what, but fortunately, there’s no need for high resolution when it’s fox. What follows is a couple of white fox stoles that all our various Monroe biopics assured us were very common in the 1950s.
The 80s start to creep in about halfway through, fortunately enough. That’s when the dyed pink fox boa with attached tails shows up. A cursory search did not turn up this as a “historically accurate” costume, so there does not appear to be any shots of the real Jayne Mansfield wearing it.
Finally, the ’80s just bash down the door and move in when Janye has family time with her daughter while wearing a full-length fox fur coat that looks off-the-rack from the furrier down the street in 1980.
The film loops back around to give us the original jacket, which raises the runtime to about 11 minutes. This slice of ‘80s cheese is a great use of your viewing time and one that won’t destroy your faith in humanity. The big ole 80s furs aren’t too bad either. Clocking in with a solid 9% radio, I’ll give this tragic blonde tale a solid “recommend.”
- Fur Runtime: approx 11:01 minutes
- Film Runtime: 120 minutes
- On-Screen Ratio: 9.18%
Find-a-Fur: The Jayne Mansfield Story, 1980
(All times are approximate and are affected by the cut of the film.)
- 00:30 – 02:30 – faux?
- 12:50 – white mink? coat
- 14:30 – white fox stole
- 20:00 – ”
- 37:15 – 40:50 – ”
- 41:15 – pink fox boa + tails
- 44:20 – ”
- 47:20 – silver fox coat
- 1:26:50 – faux? again