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Wife of a Spy

In Japanese filmmaker Kiyoshi Kurosawa’s most recent movie, a wartime wife in 1940s Japan is haunted by two possibilities: either her elusive husband, Yusaku, is an American spy or he is having an affair. Eventually it occurs to her that both could be true. The psychological thriller sees the titular wife, Satoko, torn between Yusaku, an international merchant increasingly alienated from her and the hyper-nationalistic Japan of World War II, and her childhood friend Taiji, a devoted member of the army. Kurosawa—beloved for his contributions to the J-horror boom of the early aughts—takes his time building the tension, and the double and triple crosses reveal themselves slowly and unexpectedly. The film, which won the Silver Lion at last year’s Venice Film Festival, has a limited release in the United States. The nearest theater playing Wife of a Spy might be a trek, but it’s worth it. ( —Jensen Davis



Approximately 32 percent of the women on Air Mail’s editorial staff regularly wear Yali velvet blazers. It’s because designer Pia Zanardi’s insouciant approach to dressing up always feels right. Now Yali’s new puffer sets have arrived, and we are ready to empty our wallets. The concept is simple: a smart-looking suit that consists of a cropped blazer and straight miniskirt. But the reality is so much more. It’s made of polyester created from recycled plastic bottles, and the thermal-insulation padding means that the set can be worn in the great outdoors. (More precisely: Washington Square Park.) It’s piped in velvet and finished with silk-wrapped buttons, making it the perfect outfit for a fall evening out on the town. It comes in Night Sky (navy), Primrose (light coral), and Sugarcane (ever so slightly iridescent khaki). If you’re more of a trouser person, don’t miss Yali’s silk loungewear sets, which shouldn’t be confined to the house. (blazer, $740; skirt, $451; —Ashley Baker



For once, an item that lives up to its marketing. Doublesoul, a start-up founded by University of Pennsylvania alumni, claims its socks are ultra-cushioned, super-breathable, and made from a blend of recycled materials that’s “softer than butter.” I can confirm that all three—especially the soft part—are true. The socks come in just two styles (low, hitting just beneath the ankle, and high, at mid-calf) and a handful of colors, making choosing easy. They are designed for both men and women, use earth-safe dyes, and don’t slip. You can even offset the carbon of your shipment at checkout. Once you put them on, you won’t want to take them off. (Starting at $9, —Julia Vitale


Bear Brooksbank

I once lost a diamond necklace after it slid out of my clutch bag in the back of a cab. (Don’t worry, the taxi driver found it and returned it the next day.) That farce could have been avoided had I owned the Travel Bear Box from Bear Brooksbank. The black leather, horseshoe-shaped case was designed in the company’s Shoreditch showroom to keep jewelry secure. The box’s gray suede interior includes a large compartment for earrings and necklaces as well as a removable ring tray. It’s small enough to fit in a purse, so you’ll never want to leave it behind. ($224, —Bridget Arsenault


Casamara Club

Occasionally, we make sensible decisions. Ditching the pre-dinner Campari and soda for a bottle of Casamara Club is one of them. The brand describes their product as “leisure soda,” whatever that means. The important part is that Casamara Club tastes like the best club soda with bitters you’ve ever sipped but has minimal sugar and only 15 calories. The drink is as bubbly as Badoit sparkling water—which has the perfect-size bubbles for optimal fizz—and smells of botanicals, which makes us think (perhaps naïvely) that drinking the soda counts as healthy living. Casamara Club has several different flavors, and their names (Como, Alta, Sera) nod to Italy, the birthplace of the aperitivo. We’re not done with Campari forever, but there’s something to be said for moderation … on occasion. ($36 for 12 bottles, —Ashley Baker

The Gold Coffin of Nedjemankh is displayed during a news conference to announce its return from the U.S. and display at the National Museum of Egyptian Civilization (NMEC) in Cairo, Egypt October 1, 2019.

Art Bust

In the podcast Art Bust, host Ben Lewis, a British documentarian and journalist, tells stories about the sleazy ways con artists make and deal art that ends up in museums like the Met. Scandals get an episode or two, and the crimes covered range from art forgery to coffin raiding to wire fraud. While the people behind the swindles don’t emerge looking too good, the rich collectors and museums—who can be persuaded to overlook sketchy authentication if the deal is good enough—sometimes come off looking far worse. My favorite episode, “The Golden Coffin,” details how a photo of Kim Kardashian standing next to a gold Egyptian coffin at the 2018 Met Gala helped expose an antiquity-looting-and-trafficking ring. In the end, the Met had to return the coffin, which left the museum via motorcade to board a private plane to Cairo, where it went on display. The curators involved with signing off on the coffin’s fabricated export license are still acquiring ancient Egyptian art for the museum. ( —Jensen Davis

Issue No. 117
October 9, 2021
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Issue No. 117
October 9, 2021