Spirit bottles in film.

The spirit bottle is an elegant and attractive object which grabs our attention due to its aesthetics and beauty. It produces mesmerizing dancing light, reflections and colours thanks to the multitude of drinks it can hold within. If we close our eyes and try to imagine different scenes from the world of cinema which feature spirit bottles, countless images will come to mind. Many directors have seen the spirit bottle as an object of beauty that can be used to decorate their films.

At ESTAL we have created a chronological list of our five favourite films of all time to see just how spirit bottles have often taken centre stage throughout cinema history.



1. It Happened One Night (1934)

A rich, spoiled and fickle heiress (Claudette Colbert) travels across the United States to be with her husband, an aerobatic pilot who her father detests. En route she meets Peter Warne (Clark Gable), a spirited and a somewhat rowdy journalist with whom she ends up falling in love. When all seems lost, he seeks solace in a bottle of alcohol, while she does the same in her father’s luxurious mansion, but in this case drinking from a glass. From there onwards, everything takes an unexpected twist.


2. Casablanca (1942)

In one of the scenes of what could be the most famous film of all time, Rick (Humphrey Bogart) drinks to try and forget Ilsa (Ingrid Bergman) and says the following iconic line: “Of all the gin joints in all the towns in all the world, she walks into mine.” All this takes places before a Sam who reluctantly plays a melancholic song and a spirit bottle that remains in the foreground for a large part of the scene. The spirit bottle takes centre stage in this iconic scene from Casablanca.



3. The Shining (1980)

Stanley Kubrick is a master of aesthetics and beauty and this stands out in all his films. In the iconic bar scene from The Shining, the director of 2001: A Space Odyssey is able to portray the ambiance with prodigious beauty. In a moving shot, the director follows the steps of Jack Torrance, the character brought to life by Jack Nicholson, showing us the hotel bar packed with people dressed in the vintage fashion of the 1920s and 30s. The spirit bottles that appear throughout the scene seem to glow as though they are producing their own light.


4. Blade Runner (1982)

Police officer Rick Deckard (Harrison Ford) looks over evidence and images in his apartment. In the dimly lit rooms and following the movement of Deckard, we see all manner of spirit bottles placed in the most unexpected corners of his house. The protagonist clutches a bottle of whiskey as he continues to investigate the whereabouts of the replicants he is hunting down.



5. Lost in Translation (2003)

The range of bemused faces that Bill Murray portrays throughout this film is surely one of the most commendable works of restrained expressiveness known to Hollywood. Murray’s character, Bob Harris, travels to Japan to shoot a whisky commercial and there he experiences what is probably the most surreal situation of all the many shown to us by Sofia Coppola over the course of this story. Once again, spirit bottles take a leading role throughout the film, not only because of the whisky commercial that triggers the story, but also because on many occasions it accompanies Murray’s character in his solitude.


At ESTAL we love cinema and the aesthetics of spirit bottles and that is why we have been working with them for more than 25 years. If you would like to find out about one of the latest additions to our line of liquor and spirit bottles, check out our Wildly Crafted collection. Please contact us to find out more and follow us on our social media pages.