Wednesday, 6 February 2013

Breakfast at Tiffany's


BREAKFAST AT TIFFANY’S (Colour, 1961)

Director:
Blake Edwards

Cast:
Audrey Hepburn, George Peppard, Patricia Neal, Buddy Ebsen, Martin Balsam, Jose Luis de Vilallonga, John McGiver and Mickey Rooney

Ages:
12 and up

Plot:
Holly (Hepburn) is a socialite living in an apartment in Manhattan, New York City. She is always annoying the Japanese neighbour (Rooney) upstairs, who complains the key is always misplaced by her. One day, she meets Paul Varjack (Peppard) in her apartment. Paul is being supported by 2-E (Neal). Paul proposes to Holly, but she refuses as she is determined to marry Portuguese-speaking South American millionaire Jose (Vilallonga). Paul soon learns a new thing about Holly - she has been married to Doc (Ebsen) since she was fifteen.
From left: George Peppard, Audrey Hepburn and Patricia Neal.
Why it’s good:
It is essential viewing and tale about modern loving and the pursuit of material wealth. Teenagers and adults should like it, but the younger ones may not.
Why? It is too adult. Explaining is not good enough; I did not understand the comedy-drama the first time at nine. There was too much of the Sing Sing Prison subplot with Sally Tomato. Also there was Martin Balsam as O.J. Berman, a Hollywood (?) agent. The only good fun for laughs at that time was the Japanese man's endless shouts and Holly trying to impress Paul in any way she can think of. There is a library visit, in the least.
It is also a piece of art, engravings on rings and the endless parties. The next thing is the "Moon River" song which was kind of weepy. Weepy. What a thing. Teenagers would not cry, they would laugh.

Parent’s guide:
Quite a violent breakdown in Holly’s room one day. Holly’s cat gets knocked on the wall. Holly and Paul kiss in the rain. The relationship between Paul and 2-E is quite unconventional.

Trivia:
Based on a Truman Capote novel.  Marilyn Monroe was the preferred lead for Holly, but her agent declined this role fearing it may spoil Marilyn Monroe's image.

If you like this…:
"Charade" (1963) is a screwball comedy in this chapter co-starring Hepburn. More Hepburn: "Funny Face" (1957; see Musical chapter), "My Fair Lady" (1964; see Musical chapter).

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