First Time Watching: Breakfast at Tiffany’s

Let’s get weird. In this edition of “First Time Watching”, I sat down and watched Breakfast at Tiffany’s. It was a long movie and I had to view it in two sittings because I got tired halfway through. Next time I’ll use toothpicks to keep my eyelids open.

Here are my thoughts on the movie, in no specific order, and without making the plot entirely clear.

I had heard about this movie before, but never knew what it was about. My best guess was that someone went to a restaurant called, Tiffany’s, for breakfast. Almost like if Gilmore Girls was called, Breakfast at Luke’s.

Failing that theory, I thought maybe there was a girl named Tiffany, who hosted breakfast for her friends. I’m picturing platters of croissants, and small coffee cups that force your fingers to cramp up after holding them.

Neither of those things ended up being true.

The title of the movie refers to a woman who goes to Tiffany & Co. in the morning. A jewelry store.

THEY DON’T EVEN SERVE FOOD THERE.

What a misleading title, though you could probably write a whole paper on the underlying meaning behind it. I won’t, but you could.

The main character is Holly Golightly. Google says she is a call girl and criminal. I’ve heard people say that name before, but I just thought it was a figure of speech, like the name “Karen”.

I never knew it was stolen from a movie.

You don’t hear people saying, “Wow, that guy is such a Buzz Lightyear.” Why? Why don’t people say that?

Anyway, Holly’s real name is Lula Mae and she married a rich old man – I have his name written down as “Doc” – when she was 14. Their marriage was annulled “years ago” but the old man comes back and tries to take her away. She refuses and he accepts it without putting up much of a fuss.

If this movie were set in 2020, he would’ve kidnapped her in a suitcase and boarded a train. So, it was nice to see that situation not escalate into something dark.

Also, that old man was a loser and deserved some sort of comeuppance. He body-shamed Holly, multiple times, and suggested she eat something.

Hey pal, go tie up your tongue with a shoelace and shut your mouth with velcro, we don’t need to hear your suggestions.

Anyway, let’s talk about Paul.

It was a pleasant surprise to find that I shared a name with a character in a movie. That doesn’t happen too much.

Paul and Holly (Polly?) formed a connection fairly quickly, after he moved into her apartment building in New York. They seemed to be in a final two alliance, even though she was non-committal.

She called him “Fred” a lot, which confused me. Fred is her brother and doesn’t appear in the movie. Modern day movies should steal this idea. Introduce characters, but never give them a face.

That way, when you make 18 sequels, you have new characters to develop and don’t have to rely on far-fetched storylines. You’re welcome.

There were multiple occasions where Paul was reading something, whether it was a post-it note, a check, or a newspaper, and the camera zoomed in on it and stayed there long enough so the viewer could read it.

I loved that.

Paul took Holly to Tiffany’s with a $10 budget. They ordered two grilled cheeses, without the cheese because that’s all they could affo…oh wait, they didn’t do that because Tiffany’s isn’t a restaurant. Sorry, we covered this earlier. I’m just using repetition for rhetorical effect.

The salesman offered them a Sterling Silver Telephone Dialer.

I was going to make a joke that nowadays we just use our fingers, but after reading some definitions and looking at photos, I have no clue what a Telephone Dialer actually does, so I don’t know if my joke works or not.

I feel so young.

Anyway, they don’t buy that. Instead, Paul says they could have something engraved, but the salesman says he must buy something first.

El Cheapo Grande finally pulls out a ring he got in a Cracker Jack box and asks to have it engraved.

I think that gesture meant a lot to Holly because before this, she just wanted to marry a rich man. Paul was winning her over with small gestures that didn’t cost any money because he had none.

Oh, did I mention that Paul is a writer? Well, at least when he feels like it. He’s very good at not being a writer, while claiming to be a writer.

I felt attacked.

Paul brought Holly to a library and showed her the book he wrote, Nine Lives. What a smooth cat. Holly was very loud in the library and not in a “the audio guy needs to pick up my voice with the boom mic” way but, rather, in a “no one has ever told me that libraries are supposed to be a quiet place” way.

Hey, no wonder he was cheap at the jewellery store – people read his book for free.

After autographing his own book – also known as defacing public property – the two kind-of lovebirds run into a “5 & 10” store with the intention of stealing something.

What a couple of goons!

By the way, is a “5 & 10” store the equivalent to a dollar store, or did the NFL have a 5th down back then?

I’ll pause, so that joke can sink in.

They ended up stealing a couple of masks because they knew I’d watch this movie for the first time during a global pandemic and masks are a thing.

Again, I felt attacked.

Anyway, Holly gets arrested. Not for stealing the masks, but for her role in a drug ring. Don’t worry, she gets out of jail – almost immediately.

She hops in a taxi with Paul and her plan is to escape to Mexico. He doesn’t want her to go because he loves her. She is resisting because “she doesn’t want to be put in a cage”.

If only this movie had acknowledged the fact that their couple name is “Polly”, that line would’ve had an extra layer of meaning.

Paul says he doesn’t want to put her in a cage, he wants to love her.

“SAME THING.”

Wow, that cut deep.

She has the taxi driver pull over, so she can open the door and send her cat on its way. Oh yeah, she has a cat. It doesn’t have a name. She calls it, “Cat”. Not even, “Cool Cat”. For shame.

With the nameless kitten out of the picture, the taxi keeps going to the airport, so she can flee to Mexico.

But wait! Not even four minutes later – of course I checked – Paul has convinced her to stay and be with him. She gets out of the taxi and wouldn’t you know it – it’s raining. Pathetic fallacy acting pathetic, once again.

Holly runs down the sidewalk, calling out for Cat. She finds the cat very quickly because the movie is already running a bit long.

Holly and Paul kiss in the rain, while standing next to trash cans in an ally, as the cat is squished between their bodies and nuzzling their chins with its head.

It’s a very 1961 Hollywood ending.

My final verdict is that I liked the movie. I didn’t always know why some things were happening, but I enjoyed the ride.

Most movies make the viewer feel like they are witnessing the most important days of the characters’ lives. Almost as if nothing was going on in their life until the cameras started rolling.

I did not get that sense with Breakfast at Tiffany’s. Watching this movie was like we were window shopping and then something caught our eye, so we went in. Does that make sense?

It didn’t feel like they were trying to advance a plot or create scenarios for the sake of entertainment. Everything felt natural, almost dull, but not in a bad way.

A couple of notes pertaining to music:

1. They played Moon River at least three times throughout the movie. I notice these things.

2. The song, Breakfast at Tiffany’s, had been popping up in my recommended Spotify playlists and I never really cared for it until after watching the movie. I looked up the lyrics and all they are is one person rehashing an old conversation with a girl about how they have nothing in common, except they both liked this movie.

More musicians should just rehash conversations and turn them into songs. It could go something like this:

You went out to the store
and I asked you to buy me some chips
but you said the flavour I wanted was not there
(was not there-ere-ere)
so I asked for a picture of the shelf
and you sent me one a little bit blurry
(little bit blurry-urry-urry)
but I could tell I didn’t like the flavours
so I said don’t worry about it
(worry about it-it-it) 

Bam, song.

When they give me my Grammy for that, I’m going to say it took me 56 seconds to write and that everyone else in the room isn’t on my level. Set your PVR, DVR, and VHS tape. There will be a commotion.

Anyway, I think I’ve run out of things to say about Breakfast at Tiffany’s. Good movie; don’t think I’d watch it again unless I was forced.

I’ve decided to start ranking the movies I’m watching for the first time. I reserve the right to abandon the rankings at any time, without warning, so don’t get too attached to them.

Thank you for reading!

First Time Watching Rankings
1. Back to the Future
2. Groundhog Day
3. Breakfast at Tiffany’s
4. Jurassic Park
5. The Matrix

Have you seen Breakfast at Tiffany’s? What did you think of it? What should I watch next?

About Paul

I think of my blog as an all-you-can-read buffet. There's something for everyone and complimentary mints at the door as you leave.
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27 Responses to First Time Watching: Breakfast at Tiffany’s

  1. Finally👏🏻 you kill me Paul. You can tell how annoyed you are about there being no food at Tiffany’s! 😂 it’s okay, I thought the same thing too the first time I watched it. So literal 😋

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Bill says:

    I’ve never seen it, never plan to. But that made it seem horrible.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. So what I know about this movie is that Mickey Rooney does a horribly racist character and the Tiffany blue colour was then all a rage (pretty sure the two aren’t connected). But the way you described it is WILD!! Did all that REALLY happen?! I think I’ve just found my afternoon distraction from packing and/or lesson planning! Thanks, Paul!! 😂😂😂😂

    Liked by 1 person

  4. You’re hilarious. And a great story teller, humourist, and, um, song writer… 😂

    Liked by 1 person

  5. James says:

    The guy who played Paul was George Peppard who was Hannibal in the A-Team. Always struggled to get past that when watching it. Also the Mickey Rooney character does require some filtering. But I do like this movie.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Paul says:

      It wasn’t until after I finished watching that I realized Mickey Rooney’s character was controversial. I guess I wasn’t paying attention. That casting decision would definitely not happen nowadays…I hope.

      Liked by 2 people

  6. peckapalooza says:

    You know, if you really start expanding your list of movies seen, you can let the good people at Flickchart.com keep track of your favorite movies. I don’t know why I’m wording that like it’s a commercial. I’m not a paid endorser… but I should be.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Paul says:

      Hahah who hacked your account? Blink three times if this is actually you. I’ve never heard of that site but I shall look into it!

      Liked by 1 person

      • peckapalooza says:

        Ha! It’s really me… I actually love using Flickchart, but that’s because I’ve watched more movies in my lifetime than I probably have a right to have done. The site gives you a choice between two random movies and you pick which one you like better. By doing this over and over, the site compiles your movie watching data and determines your personal top ten list… or top 100… etc. If they give you a choice of movies you haven’t seen, you have the option to say you haven’t seen one or both.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Paul says:

        Ohhh that’s brilliant! Is that what you used to organize your favourite movie list for your blog series?

        Liked by 1 person

      • peckapalooza says:

        It is indeed… no way I’d be able to put that kind of thing together without an algorithm I know nothing about.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Paul says:

        This whole time I had just imagined you sitting in front of a list of 100 movies, re-ordering them for like 4 hours until you were satisfied lol

        Liked by 1 person

  7. rebbit7 says:

    Thanks for reviewing one of my favorite films! Love your commentary; the cheap/poor writer part was hilarious (and something many of us can relate to!). I’d love for you to review Crazy Rich Asians, if you haven’t seen it yet! Keep them coming, Paul. 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I enjoyed the light tone of your reaction to the movie. It’s not really a review (as I think of that word), but still fun to read.

    One of the main reasons people make movies is that another popular version of the same story already existed, as a book, a play, a historical event, opera etc. “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” was already a bestselling novel, so like “The Godfather” or “To Kill a Mockingbird” it was likely a film adaptation would be attempted. If the original source happens to be time-tested and much-beloved, there will also be remakes, reboots and re-interpretations. They will never run out of ways to make new versions of Romeo and Juliet or the legends of King Arthur, for example.

    You could choose any iconic character (Tarzan, Dracula, Sherlock Holmes), go through a bunch of the movie versions, and have blog material for dozens, even hundreds of posts! Of course at some point the number of re-dos becomes ridiculous. No one NEEDS another “new, fresh” version of Spider-Man.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Paul says:

      Thank you! I’ve stressed from the start that I’m not reviewing the movies in which I’m watching, as much as I am just talking about them in a fun way. I’m glad that comes across.

      Your comment is spot on and much appreciated. There are tons of ways to tell a story, using the same characters. I learned that in a high school horror fiction class when we watched 4 or 5 versions of Frankenstein. At the end of the day, if people pay to go see it, then the sequels will never end.

      Thanks for the comment!

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Pingback: The week gone by — Aug. 30 – A Silly Place

  10. Paul, in a lame attempt at being Gene Siskel to your Roger Ebert, or Ebert to your Siskel (two late movie reviewers, one being heavy the other skinny), I felt Breakfast at Tiffany’s wasn’t quite the jewel I thought it would be, and that came as something of a surprise to me given that I’d always considered myself a fan of Audrey Hepburn. But, that being said, I still gave the film three stars out of five. However, I believe she shines much better in the film, Charade with Cary Grant (a nice take on the Bond movies) or How to Steal a Million with Peter O’Toole (a delightful caper). Not sure if you’ve seen either film, but I highly recommend both films as they’re quite clever and a lot of fun to watch—both are filmed in Paris. A few other genre suggestions: Scott Pilgrim vs. the World (because you’re my identical Canadian twin brother who looks nothing like me and therefore, you know all the Toronto hangouts!), Tombstone (simply thee most awesome western), The Illusionist (magic and one hell of a mystery to boot), and The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes—because, well, it’s Sherlock Holmes and we discover the secret to the Loch Ness Monster! Epic stuff! Anyway, I’d recommend more films, but you probably have way too many recommendations already. Besides, all that buttered popcorn and soda might drive up your calorie count, thus endangering my status as the perceived Roger Ebert of the two of us—as I have gained a few pounds myself during this pandemic. Alright, alright, alright more than a few pounds! But, who is going to count how many more pounds an American identical twin brother—who looks nothing like his identical Canadian twin brother (except for the pet moose we both share named Bullwinkle) gains anyway, right? :O)

    Liked by 1 person

    • Paul says:

      Haha thanks for this identical American twin brother who looks nothing like me! I feel like there was no overarching purpose to Breakfast at Tiffany’s, which made it a bit fun but also a bit pointless. I support your 3 out of 5 stars declaration. Thanks for the recommendations, I’ll add them to my list! And don’t worry about the extra pounds during the pandemic, I’ve dropped a few pounds which means, as your identical Canad…you know the rest…we balance each other out on the scale!

      Liked by 1 person

      • You’re welcome Paul, and what a relief. Why I’ve already lost a complete pound. Oh wait, it was just me removing my wallet from my trousers and putting my iPhone on a charger. But, I’m sure ounces will start melting away any second now. 😀

        Liked by 1 person

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