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Breakfast at Tiffany's (Capote) - Book Reviews

Book Reviews 
(Older works have few, if any, mainstream press reveiws online. See Amazon and Barnes & Noble for helpful customer reviews.)

Below is an interesting dicussion of the differences beween the novella and film versions:

In 1961, Blake Edwards directed the film version of Breakfast at Tiffany's, with Audrey Hepburn playing Holly Golightly. The movie is set in the late 1950's-early 60's times (when the film was made) rather than in the 1040's (the novella's time period). Other significant changes were introduced in the film, and so that each, novella and film, may be said to include themes, nuances and even characters unique to itself.

The novella and the movie, both parts of popular American culture, are best handled as separate entities: fans of the film who read the novella encounter a different Holly Golightly from the one famously portrayed by Audrey Hepburn. Capote did not approve of the changes, which he said were largely made to remove controversial elements and appeal to a broader audience. Capote also didn't like whom the studio cast as Holly Golightly: he said he preferred Marilyn Monroe to Audrey Hepburn.

The film differs from the novella in other ways—primarily in the treatment of Holly's sexual liberation and in the ending of the story. Ratings restrictions were such that in 1961 the movie studio was unable to reveal Holly's sexual history (in the novella, she has slept and lived with several men). They could, however, acknowledge that Paul, or "Fred" as Holly calls him is "kept" by a married woman (a character created entirely for the movie). The book discreetly mentions Holly being pregnant as a result of her relationship with Jose, a Brazilian diplomat, but the movie leaves this out altogether — preferring not to allude to any kind of sexual relationship having taken place.

At the movie's conclusion, after Holly learns in the taxi that her Brazilian fiance has jilted her, she forces her cat out of the cab and says that she is still going to Brazil. Paul leaves her in the taxi. She ultimately runs out into the rain and finds her cat with Paul and they kiss. In the novella, although the unnamed narrator (i.e., the film's Paul) claims to be in love with Holly, it appears to be a largely platonic and unrequited love, and he has no choice but to let her go to Brazil. Holly lets the cat go, goes to Brazil, and is never seen again. Years later, however, a common friend comes back from Africa, where he says he had seen a native sculptor who had a sculpture of Holly. The sculptor had told the common friend that some whites visited his village a few months ago, and that he had a casual affair with a beautiful woman, whose head bust he later sculpted. The friend attempted to purchase the statuette; however, the sculptor refused, even after a very generous offer. In a bittersweet ending, Paul muses that he hopes that Holly will find her happiness, even if it means sharing a hut in the savannah.
Wikipedia (Article, "Breakfast at Tiffany's.")




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