Book Review: Fifth Avenue, 5 A.M. – Sam Wasson

Title: Fifth Avenue, 5 A.M.: Audrey Hepburn, Breakfast at Tiffany’s, and the Dawn of the Modern Woman
Author: Sam Wasson
ISBN: 9780061774157
Pages: 256
Release Date: June 22, 2010
Publisher: Harper
Genre: Non-Fiction
Source: Personal Copy
Rating: 3.5 out of 5

Summary:

In this book, Sam Wasson takes the reader through the movie Breakfast at Tiffany’s from beginning to end.  He shows us the entire process of making the movie, beginning with Truman Capote’s writing of the novella, through the acquisition, adaptation, and filming.

Review:

Breakfast at Tiffany’s is one of my favorite movies.  Most romantic comedies I’ve seen don’t have long-term appeal, but this one is such a classic that I can watch it over and over again.  Every time I do, it makes me so happy for some reason.  When I heard that Fifth Avenue, 5 A.M., a sort of biography of the movie, was coming out, I immediately knew I had to read it.

I was at once thrilled and disappointed with Fifth Avenue, 5 A.M.  On one hand, there was a lot of great information I didn’t know in this book.  It really put Audrey Hepburn and her decision to take the role into context.  I also appreciated the discussion of Mickey Rooney’s Mr. Yunioshi, and how controversial he was – he’s the only aspect of the movie I abhor.  Wasson did an excellent job showing the reader exactly how the Breakfast at Tiffany’s we know and love today came to the screen.

However, on the other hand, unfortunately, that’s all Sam Wasson did.  There was a lot of potential with this book, to look at the greater trends and thoughts permeating through the time, as well as to truly dissect the movie’s effects.  This book was very much on the surface, though.  While it’s clear Wasson did interview and research those involved with the project, it seemed like he stopped there, simply translating their words for the page.  I would have loved to see something a little more in-depth.

I do love Breakfast at Tiffany’s, so any tidbit I can get about it, I’ll take.  As a result, I did like Fifth Avenue, 5 A.M.  However, I felt like there was some missed potential, as Wasson could have done a lot more with this than he did.  It’s a somewhat superficial history of a movie that had a lot of impact on American culture.  If you’re a fan of the movie, as I am, you’d probably like this book, but otherwise I wouldn’t recommend it.

Affiliate Links:

Buy this book from Powell’s Books
Buy this book from Amazon.com

Comments

  1. Well that is disappointing. There is something so timeless and universal with Audrey Hepburn and that movie. It is irresistable. Such a missed potential with this book.

  2. Well that is disappointing. There is something so timeless and universal with Audrey Hepburn and that movie. It is irresistable. Such a missed potential with this book.

  3. Bummer. I was all excited about the book (and love the cover) and now I’m not so sure. I may check it out of the library, but I don’t see myself racing to read it.

  4. Bummer. I was all excited about the book (and love the cover) and now I’m not so sure. I may check it out of the library, but I don’t see myself racing to read it.

  5. I was excited when I saw the cover, but I’m not sure the book is for me – I want to know all the juicy tidbits, not just the surface stuff.

  6. I was excited when I saw the cover, but I’m not sure the book is for me – I want to know all the juicy tidbits, not just the surface stuff.

  7. It must have been such a disappointment for you to go into the book looking for something, and then not finding it (or enough of it). I am sorry to hear that this one didn’t live up to it’s full potential. I have never seen the movie, so the book doesn’t appeal to me personally, but I enjoyed hearing your thoughts on it.

  8. It must have been such a disappointment for you to go into the book looking for something, and then not finding it (or enough of it). I am sorry to hear that this one didn’t live up to it’s full potential. I have never seen the movie, so the book doesn’t appeal to me personally, but I enjoyed hearing your thoughts on it.

  9. I’ve never actually seen the movie… do you recommend that? Is there a Christmas scene or something in it? Because I thought I read somewhere that they considered it a “Christmastime” movie.

  10. I’ve never actually seen the movie… do you recommend that? Is there a Christmas scene or something in it? Because I thought I read somewhere that they considered it a “Christmastime” movie.

  11. I was also disappointed by this although I’m not a big BAT fan like you. There’s just something so lacking.

  12. I was also disappointed by this although I’m not a big BAT fan like you. There’s just something so lacking.

  13. Jenny – It’s not really a Christmas movie, though I do think they show it at Christmas just because it’s a feel good movie! I highly recommend watching it, it’s one of my favorites.

  14. Jenny – It’s not really a Christmas movie, though I do think they show it at Christmas just because it’s a feel good movie! I highly recommend watching it, it’s one of my favorites.

  15. Too bad it was disappointing and that the author didn’t go the extra mile.

  16. Too bad it was disappointing and that the author didn’t go the extra mile.

Leave a Reply

Comment Policy:  I welcome comments and read each one I receive. If your comment needs a response, I will provide it in a timely manner, as I read every comment I receive. Please keep your comments civil and polite! I reserve the right to delete any comments that are rude or inappropriate. Because of spam, I have to moderate comments on old posts. Please be patient - I will approve your comment quickly.

Before the tag in the Genesis footer: !-- Quantcast Tag -->