Musical Movie Moments

Muskaan Jadeja

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One of my favorite English songs is “Moon River” from Breakfast at Tiffany’s. Hepburn’s character, Holly Golightly had so many layers: odd, eccentric and childish, with a certain aura of free-ness to her that pulled you in. From not naming her cat to avoid attachments, to engaging in quick romances and brushing off everything that hurt her, some part of her still had the young 15-year-old runaway in her, and we see that girl at the end of the film. She’s so likable that even her oddities make her so lovable and you want a happy ending for her.

“Moon River” has a dream-like quality to it, with the soft voice, the light melody or maybe just the fact that it’s Audrey Hepburn. It’s like prancing on clouds, and following Paul Varjak from his typewriter—conveniently writing about Holly— to his window to find her on her windowsill, looking off into the distance, and it’s almost contentment on her, but it could be pain and loneliness. The premise of the song, the shooting itself is so aesthetically pleasing, with Holly’s clothing, her pose, the very look on her face and the angle being Paul’s view of her, the minimal music, the soft voice, everything that went in packaged this so well. I’m a big fan of using unconventional angles, especially in songs. Focusing on smaller nuances of the actors, like shadows, reflections, objects they toy with, or just the small interactions. Films are like writing coming alive, and honestly, when I’m writing, I’m watching my story like a movie and focusing on things cameras don’t pick up, so when a film acts like a book in detail, it’s really cool. All in all, an amazing piece put together. 

The song starts at Paul’s feet, surrounded by crumpled piles of paper and frustrated ticking from the typewriter and follows him out to his window to find Holly. He only had like 2 sentences typed out, and the description of Holly really tells us a lot of what he takes her for. It’s sort of simplistic, with the title, “My Friend,” describing her as a wildly interesting person, calling her a “very lovely, very frightened girl.” 

Even the lyrics, “Two drifters, off to see the world, there’s such a lot of world to see,” with a resigned face that she’ll never see it all. But Holly and Moon River, they’re “after the same rainbow’s end, waitin’ round the bend,” 

“My huckleberry friend, Moon River and Me”