The other night I settled happily on my couch with an Audrey Hepburn movie. You know the one--a wide-eyed, innocent young Audrey Hepburn falls for a wildly inappropriate, much older man who doesn't seem to know she's alive, until suddenly, he does. Romance ensues.
|Love in the Afternoon|
|My Fair Lady|
Synopsis: innocent, young, cello-playing Ariane falls (inexplicably, frustratingly) in love with wrinkled old skin bag and notorious playboy, Frank Flannagan. They spend one passionately chaste afternoon together, she pines, and then when they run into each other again one year later, he doesn't even remember her. Romantic! She then beats him at his own game, inventing and casually name dropping a string of ex-suitors, including alpine guides, bull fighters, and professional ice hockey players. Hey, guess what--now he's interested! Predictability ensues.
And just look at how happy they are together:
|Must be love! Or gastrointestinal distress.|
Then I started thinking about other, equally loathsome Audrey Hepburn movie plot lines.
Funny Face: It's Fred Astaire, so the man can dance, but let's face it, he's not much of a looker. Also, thirty years older than her. Bookish, young salesgirl-turned-reluctant model falls in love with her photographer. Basic stuff here.
Sabrina: At least the leading man is handsome. Nope, I've got no problems with Bogey, at least from an aesthetic point of view. But it does fit the AH film equation that goes: man + 30 years too old + virginal young girl x [doesn't know she's alive] x [something happens] / [she becomes desirable] = LOVE²
My Fair Lady: Admittedly, I am all about My Fair Lady. The singing! The fancy dresses! The misogyny! Oh wait, right. In this movie we have Rex Harrison as the smug, dubiously heterosexual old windbag, Professor Higgins. (Why can't a woman be more like a man? Oh just get it on with Colonel Pickering, already, Higgins; we know you want to.) The ending of this movie is not satisfying.
|"Eliza, bring me my slippers." (Seriously, that's the last line of the movie. Romantic!)|
Charade: Ding ding ding! We have a winner! No longer able to play a virginal young teen/twenty-something, Audrey now plays a mature widow in her thirties. Cary Grant is his usual Cary Grant-ish self. There's a plot twist every thirty seconds. This movie is just about perfect.
|Even the coats are perfect.|