Wednesday, October 9, 2013

The Classics Club: Breakfast at Tiffany's

(about the Classics Club)

I first read "Breakfast at Tiffany's" in high school, after I saw and fell in love with the movie.  I found the novella a sad disappointment, as it wasn't like the movie, so promptly pushed it out of my mind.

As an adult, I wasn't so impressed with the movie--the horrible portrayal of Mr. Yunioshi in particular and pretty much everything else in general--so I began to think maybe I needed to reread the novella and see what Capote really intended.

I'll confess, I'm just as unimpressed as I was some twenty years ago, though not for the same reasons.

Frankly, very little.

Louise Brooks
I did think that Holly looked (not at all like Audrey Hepburn, but) like a blonde Louise Brooks, with even fuller lips.  The description of her resembled Hepburn in no way whatsoever; I can't imagine why she was cast.  Having set it in the present day when they filmed it, the clothing and manners were all wrong in the movie as well; I was glad that I had the knowledge to be able to imagine the right clothing, hair styles and props that were suitable for the story.

I also thought what an unappealing character Holly was.  I had no sympathy for or connection with her at all, nor did I find the plot particularly interesting.

Capote's prose was fine, but not stellar, certainly not captivating enough to make this (to my mind) a classic.

With the exception of the final line, which generated a small bit of emotion due to Capote's obvious attempts to twang the heartstrings, I was unmoved.  Again, I'll say that neither plot nor characters interested me enough to have any feelings for them.

I'm sure Capote had a message or an impression he wanted left with the reader, but I was unable to find it.  I was not a good match for this book.  

To show just how unmemorable "Breakfast at Tiffany's" was to me, I will mention that I forgot it even existed in my literary world. I read it in mid-to-late September, but was so unmoved by it that I didn't add it to my list of books read and didn't think of writing up the notes until now.