Friday, 20 November 2009

Breakfast at Tiffany's

I love the book Breakfast at Tiffany's deeply and unquestionably (as is the case with must of Truman Capote's writing). And I wish I could feel the same way about the film version from 1961. But I can't.

Most of the film is irresistible. Enchanting. It has whitewashed much of the book, but there's still enough risky business going on, for example about them both having prostituted themselves. Audrey Hepburn and George Peppard make an adorable couple, both as friends and as lovers. Blake Edwards' patience and lingering camera work is very good, especially in the scene when Holly comes to visit Paul in the middle of the night, and they talk and eventually she falls asleep in his arms. It's a beautiful scene, how it's written, directed and acted. Tender and sweet, but with teeth and innuendo. And on top of that, Henry Mancini's music is also beautiful. When I saw it at a cinema yesterday night, I even discovered a new thing about it, concerning Holly's jewellery, even though I've already seen it more times than I dare to mention.

But then there's Mickey Rooney's role as Holly's neighbour Mr Yunioshi. It's a crude stereotype of a Japanese man, and it involves much slap stick, which is only in bad taste and so unnecessary. I wish it wasn't there. If it wasn't for that, I'd love the film with all my heart. By all means, there should be a mr Yunioshi, but made with a little less bad taste.

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