Monday, November 24, 2008

Breakfast At Tiffany's

It's one of those classic movies that everyone raves about. (And if you are one of those people who raves about it, stop reading right now. I don't want you to hate me. If, however, you will remain unscarred by my scathing review, read on. Just be glad I will not be reviewing Twilight).

I started the iconic film with high hopes. After all, what's not to love? Audrey Hepburn. New York City. High fashion. Handsome leading man. But I must say, I was unimpressed. In fact, unimpressed is too diplomatic a word. Annoyed? Aghast? Confused beyond measure? How in the world did this movie become a classic? After watching it, I have absolutely no idea.

The movie was too long, too random, and had absolutely nothing to do with having breakfast at Tiffany's. Oh, the famous store is mentioned and one scene is filmed there, but any actual breakfasting does not take place. I was expecting some sort of pivotal moment from which the movie plucked its title. But no. It's a film where an idiotic/materialistic girl meets an idiotic/materialistic guy. She's busy fishing for some multi-millionaire to support her in style, he's living on some rich woman's dime in some sort of reverse sugar-daddy role, complete with bedroom privileges.

You'd think a movie made in 1961 would be a lot less racy. But no, we have a scene where Miss Hepburn's character climbs into bed with a completely naked man she just met, she attends a strip club with him where they watch an exotic dancer remove her top, leaving the camera to avert its lens in just the nick of time, the main falling-in-love activity includes some time spent shoplifting (apparently a fun little habit of hers) and to top it off, she's ridiculously stupid enough to be passing secrets to an incarcerated criminal through a fake weather report. And if that weren't bad enough, we are supposed to believe that her character, Holly Golightly, began life as hick-ish Lula Mae Barnes, married at the age of 14 to a man who must be three times her age. Whom she apparently left, to find herself or whatever.

Not to mention the musical score is about as subtle as a sledgehammer to the head, and seemed more appropriate for a suspense thriller than a cotton candy romance. At times completely inexplicable, and at others completely absent - the music would swell hopefully until the characters kissed, and then stop dead, leaving me strangely unfulfilled. How are you supposed to experience the romantic climax if there is no accompanying musical crest? Just wondering - it took away from the movie itself, apparently forgetting the rule that the best musical score is one you don't notice.

And yet, somehow this score managed to clinch an academy award, in addition to a nod for its famous retch-worthy song, "Moon River". I don't know why, but this is just one of those songs I can't stand, much like anything by Neil Diamond (a common thread being ridiculous lyrics - "Huckleberry friend"? What is that? Or in Neil Diamond's case "I am I said to no one there, and no one heard at all, not even the chair..." Um, maybe it's just me, but I think I'm missing the deeper meaning.)

I know, you can all hate me now for my lack of taste or art appreciation, or simply because of my mean comment about nice-guy Neil Diamond, but honestly, this has to be one of the most overrated movies in the history of humanity. It deserves to be knocked off its place atop the totem pole. I mean, I love a large number of classic movies, cheesy endings, films with cutesy songs, and especially romances. But this movie was just more than I could stand. And apparently more than I could understand.


foculbrown said...

I had a lot of the same feelings when I watched it. I love Audrey Hepburn, but this movie did nothing for me. I hated the idea that "Col. 'Hannibal' Smith" of "The A-Team" fame was a kept-man. That just didn't work for me.

Why did it win two Oscars for the Music? Hepburn also got nominated for Best Actress, along with nominations for Best Set Decorations and Best Adapted Screenplay. What was it up against in 1961? (BTW, I love IMDB.)

I'm with you; I just don't get it.

I can't wait for your "Twilight" review. I know you went to a midnight showing opening night.

kws said...

Amen to all you said!

Aaron said...

Your rants are so good you should start a separate blog just for them!

Sara said...

You actually WATCHED Twilight? Please don't tell me I'm not the only woman on the planet who is refusing to watch it.

On that note, I've never seen Breakfast at Tiffany's, but I hate when a top-billed movie (especially classics) ends up being far below your expectations. I tried to watch the Woody Allen "classic" Annie Hall on TV two weeks ago. I got 30 minutes in and turned it off. It was so bizarre I couldn't enjoy a moment of it.

Bonnie said...

Never fear, Sara, I would never do such a thing (well, maybe I would simply to make fun of it). But as for now I have no plans to see the movie.

singingrae said...

I totally agree. I was nothing short of horrified by the entire film and have tried to block it out of my Audrey Hepburn experience. What WAS she thinking?!

MyDonkey Five said...

Thanks for the heads up. I've always been curious about it, but now I just don't have any interest to see it. Ugh!

fiona said...

Yeah, not the best. Though I always felt like I SHOULD like it more because of Audrey Hepburn. She's awesome. And I definitely liked cat :)

What? You're not going to see Twilight??! haha. I have yet to read the books, but I'm on the verge of giving in. I'll probably end up liking them, but I don't want to!

overlyactive said...

Devin and I watched this when we were dating and I feel asleep because I was bored and Devin said he didn't like the movie either but what do you do when your date falls asleep?

mean aunt said...

Bonnie I think you should go see Twilight just to review it.

Also anything with Angelina Jolie

Megan B said...

Ok, I think I am having an abnormal reaction to your post. You made it sound so awful that I want to see it for myself so that I can share in your horror. How messed up am I?