Art Meds pt. 1: Breakfast at Tiffany’s

There are some pieces of art – mostly movies and books, then music, paintings or photographs – that I must take a regular dose of. To proceed with this metaphor, I think you’ll find that I take a rather large amount of medication: great white pills for immunity, the little round aspirin against pain, tiny red ones to fight off allergies, colorful anti-stresses, and a whole lot more to tend heart, blood pressure, calcium etc.

Along that line, Breakfast at Tiffany’s is among respiratory drugs. When I have problems breathing, my lungs can’t seem to spread enough air around, or something is blocking the way, I prescribe me a Breakfast at Tiffany’s, and after only one pill I can breathe again. Only, one ought to be careful with those, as they’re only produced in 500 mg dose. They’re not to be taken too often; otherwise your lungs will be ruined.

We all know the story. There was once a very lovely, very frightened girl. She lived alone, except for a nameless cat.

That’s the beginning. The volume of absurd goes slowly up as you befriend Holly and become a part of her extraordinary, unexpectedly fast an seemingly very happy life; not too long it takes for you to realize how far from happy her life is. Sure, it would be wonderful to be unbound, a free spirit, attending a different party every night, getting money from rats and super-rats – if it were really so. But, as Paul clearly stated, “if I were you, I’d be more careful with my money. Rusty Trawler is too hard a way of earning it.” I know he’s right, and regardless of that, I’d still do exactly what Holly did: “It should take you exactly four seconds to cross from here to that door. I’ll give you two.”

Yes, it is my childish pride that often rejects harshly said truths in an attempt to help me; you see, both Paul and Holly are trying to help Holly, and they’re both failing at that point, because of Holly. And it’s all contained in that very short, two-sentence dialogue. There is no therapist in the world that could explain you this like a Breakfast at Tiffany’s can.

That’s one of my emotional highlights; the other one is, of course, the final scene with the cab and the cat. “People don’t belong to people” is something I’d always thought to be true, and there I sit and listen to George Peppard prove it wrong in a matter of seconds. But it’s not just about that; what they’re saying, although very important, isn’t the point. From their faces, from their eyes, their reactions, you can see what’s going on, you can feel what’s going on, you sense the significant change and a storm of thought raging inside each of them as he angrily gives the ring to Holly and leaves, and she – and you all know that feeling – looks at the ring, holding it in her hands, touching it with her fingers, reading the engraving, while her chest is tightening and burning up and the tears are striking stronger every second… seeing such a tempest cannot leave you indifferent. And after such a preparation, there comes the end scene, Cat calling out in the very last desperate moment, right before the reunion, which always makes me cry, seemingly for no reason, but actually…haven’t I explained the entire process just now?

It is possible that I am not making myself clear. Well – I’m writing about how a movie can heal me better than a drug. It’s not that simple to be clear about that. Any one of you out there (assuming there is someone out there reading this) who’s watched the movie – I’m sure that, to you, it’s clear enough.

And so the frightened girl gets released of her fear. I can breathe again.


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