I don't know about you, but as a movie lover and maker, I haven't been too particularly touched or impressed by what I've been seeing in theaters lately (besides Spike Lee's Blackkklansman- which I'll talk about later). As this directly revolves around what I do for a living, I can't help but think to myself of all of the things that contribute to this feeling of mine. I look back to all of the classic films that I absolutely cherish, that bring me to tears, make me wish I were friends with the characters, remind me of the magic that movies can create, and help me escape from reality for a little while. These are the movies that withstand the sands of time, and even still play in theaters today. The stories that don't try so hard to be mega-hits, that don't play to societal standards and are just really only concerned with being themselves (difficult to compare to other films because they are so unique). When I think of the classics, I think of movies like Singing in the Rain, Forrest Gump, Some Like it Hot, Braveheart, but most of all, I think of Breakfast at Tiffany's.
holly is living the (Stylish) story of our life
So, why do we love Breakfast at Tiffany's? It's about a girl, who wanted more out of the life she had and went out to find out exactly what her new life would consist of. Though it meant leaving loved ones and the responsibilities that life entailed, she loved herself enough to create a better life for herself, and wanted to find a way to support someone she loved most - her younger brother. Along the way though, she lost herself in the standards of society, who she was supposed to be according to them, and how to support her brother through only money, not love, and through this she shut off her vulnerability and ability to connect to others on a more personal level by being herself. Does this sound familiar?
For me it's a definite yes. In Breakfast at Tiffany's, Audrey Hepburn is playing nineteen-year-old Holly Golightly. She is living on her own in Manhattan, trying to make a way for herself - at NINETEEN to support herself and her brother - who is currently away at war - so those she was connected to before won't have to - and so she can be free from her old life for good. This is so relatable in the fact that so many of us, at eighteen, leave for college trying to create a life for ourselves that will support us for the rest of our days. With this though, our main focus is the ability to make enough money, all the while, often forgetting about what will make us happy. Holly does this by trying to find a wealthy man to marry, forgetting about her own happiness and chance at love, and therefore, disconnecting emotionally. I feel, especially in this day and age, this is extremely relevant.
It's so difficult not to love Her
Even with her scheming and less than moral ways, it is ever so very difficult not to love Holly. Audrey Hepburn does an exceptional job and portraying the character of Holly in the most charismatic and natural way. It doesn't once feel like she is acting, and because of that, you feel like Holly is a friend you would die to have. She is spunky, eloquent, knows how to stand her ground and get what she thinks she wants. Charismatic is her middle name, and style is her first, she has a lot of love to give and passion to share, and all the while, is going through the same problems as us (that can be interchangeable of course).
Because of this, you just want to shake some sense into her and tell her to forget the icky rich guys who will never love her like she deserves, and go be with Paul. That way she can be herself and they can find a life together in actual happiness compared to the pre-perceived notions of it.
The story Doesn't Try to Be Something It's not
Breakfast at Tiffany's is something that is incomparable in every way. It's just as unique as you or me. It has its own personality, is going as it's own pace, the story doesn't feel made up to appease our needs, and as far as Holly's concerned, you're just along for the ride. That's what makes it so magical. This film is about a girl, going through life, and all the while, finally understanding who she is allowed to be in the world, and who she'll be happy being. It's not a quest for love, it's not an action piece trying to woo you with every forced shot, it's not a character trying to get you to like her, it's just a movie about Holly Golightly being her wonderful self, meeting someone who reminds her that being herself is always enough to be loved, and is taught how to genuinely love again and have an emotional connection. That's it. Just a movie as simple and as unique as "Breakfast at Tiffany's," would be.
It's Honest, relatable, and completely unique
...and because of that reason above, is why we love it so much. It's why it's a classic. It's why it's still showing in theaters on select days throughout the year so people can experience this special story on the big screen. Originally a book by Truman Capote in 1958, he told a story about a girl just going through life on her own way, and finding the true meaning of it at the end - on her own terms. You are just a fly on the wall, you are of no concern to the characters living their lives - and because of that, they're your friends. The story is simple, and you're allowed to just sit back and take in each magical, heart sparking moment. It's not about entertainment, it's about being vulnerable - and in today's case, that's something that lets you escape from every day life - and that's what stories like this and theater are all about.
XOXO - Mary Gabrielle Strause