Hear me out.
We all know that photograph. Audrey Hepburn standing in front of Tiffany's on Madison Avenue with her pastry, coffee cup, Givenchy dress and Oliver Goldsmith sunglasses. It's chic, it's beautiful, and it is fashion iconography at its best. The only thing is, this representation of Holly Golightly is not an accurate one. The concept of beauty has become more important than personality and that's where I take issue.
In the book, Breakfast At Tiffany's, Truman Capote wrote about a selfish, chaotic girl, who's only goal was to marry for money. As women try their best to break out of the age old stereotype that marriage is the ultimate goal and we need to be taken care of, this Holly Golightly character merely brings us back to the roles we're trying to break free from.
Holly Golightly can't pay rent, her beauty is what gets her by, she's selfish, and immature. Sure, she's had to endure some traumatic events in her life, but doesn't negate that she's kind of messed up. The film version of this story takes this character and glorifies all of the horrible traits that Capote describes.
And yet she is an icon of womanhood and fashion.
I think we get confused when we see Audrey Hepburn as Holly Golightly. It's interesting casting because here's this lovely graceful woman playing this really shallow superficial character and all we see if Audrey's glamour. We don't care that Holly Golightly uses her sexuality to get out of paying rent or how her ultimate goal is to marry rich or die trying.
Breakfast At Tiffany's is a fashionable movie. I take style inspiration from this film in the dark sunglasses and cups of coffee, eye masks, and shoes in the fridge. But we mustn't forget the story behind it all. It tells a story about a girl who cannot see past the superficiality of her world who uses people to get what she wants and doesn't care who gets hurt in the process. She has done nothing to further a woman's place in the world and this is why she's an asshole.