We’ve heard so much lately about the dramas on set of the Olivia Wilde directed movie, Don’t Worry Darling. Was there a full scale row between the director and her leading lady, Florence Pugh? Were Olivia and Harry Styles indulging in unprofessional levels of PDA? And did the gorgeous Harry Styles spit on Chris Pine? And who cares?! All of this, pales into insignificance when dazzled by the gorgeous Mid-Century Modern style on display.
The real star of this film is Palm Springs. It is even more glamorous than its gorgeous leads. It is the spiritual home of Mid-Century Modern design, and it shines through like the beauty it is. The architecture gleams in the foreground with the desert, boulders and palm tress providing all important backdrop. The production team were adamant it had to be filmed here despite all the practical difficulties, and it raises the film to another level. It is undoubtedly the perfect setting for the fictional utopia (or dystopia?) of Victory. A Mid-Century Modern dream.
Palm Springs Mid-Century Modern Locations
The Volcano House shown above is perfectly cast as The Victory Project’s headquarters. The scenes in which this is featured are some of the most atmospheric and are redolent of the sci-fi films of the mid-century era.
The cul-de-sac where Jack and Alice live is located in Canyon View Estates in South Palm Springs. Designed by iconic architectural duo William Krisel and Dan Palmer from 1962 to 1966. Canyon View’s 180 units boast hallmark features; natural stone walls, floor to ceiling glass windows, decorative concrete screens, butterfly rooflines and carports. The utopian vision is completed by lush communal areas with swimming pools, spas and lawns.
Chris Pine plays a sinister cult leader, apparently inspired by clinical psychologist Jordan Peterson. And he is the lucky inhabitant of one of the world’s most iconic mid-century modern houses, The Kaufmann House, designed by Richard Neutra in 1946. The famous Slim Anderson photo of Poolside Gossip featured early on Olivia Wilde’s moodboard so this was integral to the movie’s mise-en-scene.
Mid-Century Modern Interiors
Furthermore, the production designer Katie Byron lovingly recreates the interiors of the era on the studio set.
The living room features the split-level detailing that was so prevalent at the time. The built-in corner sofa almost creates a conversation pit; another legendary mid century feature. Completed with a teak sideboard, floor to ceiling simple drapes and of course the groovy 60s TV.
The dining area features another mid-century staple; the rock wall. What a space for inviting the boss over for dinner!
And of course the mid-century style wouldn’t be complete without the avocado bathroom suite. love the concertinaed mirrors too. These add to the sense of a fractured mind in the more menacing scenes in the movie.
Mine’s a Martini please Harry. Shaken or stirred will be just fine. We all need this mid-century modern hallmark; the home bar.
Sadly I can’t find any pictures of Jack and Alice’s beautiful bedroom. It features a boulder rising up through the floor in true MCM desert style. Apparently added to give a sense of danger and impending doom ot their bedroom scenes! And the bedspread is gorgeous, but you’ll have to go and see the movie if you want to see it yourself.
GET THE LOOK
Most of the furniture was custom-built or bought from the many antique stores in Palm Springs itself. But here at Mad About Mid Century Modern we can help you to whip up a similar look..
Rabano Ceramic and Raffia Table Lamp£185.00
Two Boucle Dining Chairs£525.00
Quilda Vintage 2-Door 4-Drawer Oak Sideboard£1,225.00
Amaya Outdoor ChairProduct on sale
Garden Tiki Bar with 2 Stools£279.99
Julian Small Glass Semi-Flush Ceiling Light£245.00
Mona Velvet Armchair£975.00
Verna Bronze Drinks TrolleyProduct on sale
Yaku Hemp Lampshade£99.00
Pletenice Buffet Sideboard£1,325.00
Logan Leather Lounge Chair£465.00
If you haven’t seen Don’t Worry Darling yet it really is worth it for the beauty of the mid-century modern locations and the stunning set design. I enjoyed the drama too! And if you want to visit Palm Springs to view more of it’s amazing architecture try and get there during Modernism Week. You will be in for a treat!