10 beautiful movie dresses that always take our breath away

Every time we sit down to watch a movie, there’s always one thing that we pay a particular close attention to - the outfits!

Whether it’s helping the viewer to immerse themselves in the film’s atmosphere, or giving some serious fashion inspiration, a movie’s costuming can provide some major moments.

So, this is why we thought we’d take a look back at some of the most iconic movie dresses from the past few decades. There’s nothing we love more than when our lead female character gets to have her ‘Cinderella’ moment on screen, and all of these below are undoubtedly memorable:

How To Lose A Guy In 10 Days

Credit: Paramount

Starting off with a classic rom-com, How To Lose A Guy In 10 Days contains one of my all-time favourite movie dresses. As the film reaches its peak, Kate Hudson’s character Andie steps out in a gorgeous, backless yellow gown. In this moment, Matthew McConaughey’s character accurately represents every viewer, as Ben’s breath is immediately taken away by the sight of Andie in *that* dress.

Anyone But You

I watched this new rom-com for the first time a few weeks ago, and was immediately mesmerised by actress Sydney Sweeney’s incredible dresses. However, there is one particular gown that stood out to me (and many other viewers) in Anyone But You, and that was Bea’s beautiful, pale blue dress that she wears to her sister’s rehearsal dinner. We will never not be obsessed with how the sleeves billow in the wind, particularly as Glen Powell’s character Ben helps to lift her down upon their arrival. Swoon!


Credit: Universal/Focus

Even though it is an absolutely devastating movie, we’ll always love Atonement for three main reasons - James McAvoy, Keira Knightley, and that phenomenal green dress. Everything about this gown is a delight - the 1920s style, the vibrant but soft green, and its elegant low back. At the time of its release, voters in a Sky Movies/InStyle survey even chose to name it as ‘the greatest film costume ever’. It’s hard to disagree!

The Princess Diaries

Credit: Disney

Throughout the entirety of this classic Anne Hathaway film, Mia’s grandmother (played by Julie Andrews) is on a mission to blossom the teen princess into a future ruler. So, naturally, the end of the film culminates in Mia transforming into a gorgeous gown for Genovia’s annual Independence Day Ball. Although this is not the only time that we see Mia receiving a makeover, it is the moment where we truly see her as a princess for the first time - and she certainly looks the part!

Pretty Woman

Julia Roberts’ hit 90s rom-com includes many outfits that have now been made iconic, with several of them usually making appearances as Halloween costumes each year. However, the most glamorous of all has to be Vivian’s sweetheart red dress, paired with a set of long white gloves. In one of the film’s most memorable scenes, Edward (played by Richard Gere) then gives Vivian a loan of a $250,000 necklace, which pairs magnificently with her already-magnificent dress.

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

Credit: Warner Brothers

The fourth installment of the Harry Potter franchise is seen by many as a step towards more mature themes, and this is also apparent with Hermione’s ‘blossoming’ moment. As the gang prepare to enter the Yule Ball, all eyes fall on the know-it-all student as she walks down the steps in an elegant pink dress. Although her night ultimately ends in tears (thanks to Ron’s jealousy over her date with Viktor Krum), Hermone’s Yule Ball dress remains to be one of the most beloved costumes amongst Harry Potter fans.


Credit: Disney

As every Disney fan knows all too well, the majority of the franchise's princesses has a breathtaking moment where they transform into a magical dress. While there are so many standout favourites, if we had to pick just one, it would be Cinderella’s ball gown. In particular, I adore Lily James’ sparkling blue gown from the 2015 live-action adaptation. It has since been said by Lily that the dress was “like torture” to wear, but her anguish certainly pays off for how incredible it looks on screen.


Credit: 20th Century Fox

Just before disaster strikes on board the Titanic, Kate Winslet’s character Rose gets the chance to wow viewers (and naturally, Jack too) with her glitzy, black evening gown. The dress is perfectly fitting for the era of the early 1900s, but somehow, we still find ourselves wishing that it was readily available to wear in the present day. If only we had the movie’s famous sapphire necklace to pair with it!

La La Land

Credit: Summit/Lionsgate

Although it is a quite simple outfit - compared to some of the other entries in this list, at least -, I believe that Emma Stone’s pop-of-yellow dress from La La Land has become a firm favourite amongst movie goers in recent years. Ahead of its release in 2016, it was heavily featured in the film’s marketing posters, and it becomes a sharp focus in one of La La Land’s best musical numbers ('A Lovely Night'). Mia's monochrome tap shoes aren't necessarily the best fashion choice to pair with this dress, but we'll forgive her in favour of this joyful dance routine.

The Sound of Music

Every time I watch The Sound of Music, I am instantly drawn to Liesl’s soft, pink dress that she wears for Maria’s first dinner with the Von Trapps. Of course, Liesl doesn’t stay at the table for very long, as she sneaks out to meet her sweetheart Rolf. The song 'Sixteen Going On Seventeen' later begins, giving Liesl’s dress a proper opportunity to sparkle as Rolf dances with her through the garden gazebo. Liesl truly looks like a floating angel in it!