Breakfast at Tiffany's (1961)
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Based on Truman Capote's 1958 novella of the same
title, BREAKFAST AT TIFFANY'S (1961) is the story of a woman on her own making her
way in the big city. As stories go, it is short on plot
but rich in characterization which may explain why its protagonist, Holly Golightly, has become Audrey Hepburn's
most memorable screen persona. In the hands of director
Blake Edwards, the film
neglects much of the book's foreboding edge, but gains an unforgettable
comedic touch which actually helps accentuate the darker moments. In
musical score and Hubert de Givenchy's gowns for Ms.
Hepburn successfully uphold Capote's style when the story itself is
forced to leave his writing behind. Like the protagonist at its heart,
BREAKFAST AT TIFFANY'S is quirky, funny, bewildering, serious,
sophisticated and bittersweet --
and as movies go, great entertainment.
Meet Holly Golightly (Audrey Hepburn).
Here she is on New York's 5th Avenue in the early morning hours, dressed
to the nines, sipping coffee, nibbling a danish and window shopping at
Tiffany's under the opening credits.
River" (clip) by Henry Mancini
(an .AU file courtesy Rhino Records).
Meet Cat, Holly's feline roommate. They don't
belong to each other, but they get on well together, entertaining at night
and sleeping during the day -- or trying to, until author Paul Varjak
(George Peppard) buzzes them from downstairs because he can't get in the
Paul thinks he's just coming in to use the telephone, but unbeknownst to
him, he has now entered Holly's world.
On Thursdays, Holly goes to visit mafioso Sally Tomato at Sing
Because she's overslept this morning, Paul (whom Holly has decided to call
Fred because he looks like her brother Fred) helps her get dressed.
A dress, a hat, some earrings, a pair of alligator shoes and...
a .WAV file.)
- "Poor old cat. Poor slob. Poor slob
without a name. The way I look at it, I don't have the right to
give him one. We don't belong to each other. We just took up
by the river one day." --Holly.
- "I don't want to own anything until I find a place
where me and things go together. I'm not sure where that is, but I
know what it's like. It's like Tiffany's." --Holly.
- "Listen...you know those days when you get the mean reds?"
"The mean reds? You mean like the blues?" --Fred (Paul).
"No... the blues are because you're getting fat or because it's been raining
too long. You're just sad, that's all. The mean reds are horrible. Suddenly
you're afraid and you don't know what you're afraid of. Do you ever get that
"Sure." --Fred (Paul).
"When I get it the only thing that does any good is to jump into a cab and
go to Tiffany's. Calms me down right away." --Holly.
- "If I could find a real life place to make me feel
like Tiffany's, then I'd buy some furniture and give the cat a name."
- "Thursday! Oh no, it can't be! It's too
- "You can always tell what kind of a person a man
really thinks you are by the earrings he give you... I must say, the
mind reels!" --Holly.
- "You don't have to worry. I've taken care of
myself for a long time." --Holly.
Out front, Paul tries to get her a cab, but Holly
doesn't need his help.
Just as Holly is about to get into the cab, Paul's "decorator,"
Mrs. Failenson, steps out,
and after a brief (and awkward) introduction of the two women, Holly
speeds away: "Grand Central Station, and step on it, darling!"
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