On 4 March, Hollywood celebrates the Academy Awards, its most important ceremonial event. As you watch the night’s entertainment, overflowing with talent, excitement, rustling gowns and memorable speeches, why not enjoy the refined aroma of the Milano blend, an ideal way to take you through to dawn.
And, as we wait to know the winner of the sought-after statuette, let’s get in the mood by recalling some of the films in which coffee has played a leading role.
Breakfast at Tiffany’s
Coffee is the best way to start the day. Or end it. Especially if you happen to be on Fifth Avenue in front of Tiffany’s glittering windows and you are Audrey Hepburn. Her stroll at dawn and her insuperable elegance as she eats a brioche, while sipping coffee from a paper cup, has made cinema and fashion history.
Coffee is so much a part of our lives that we even think about it in our dreams. When Cobb (Leonardo Di Caprio) explains to Ariadne (Ellen Page) how the mind creates our oneiric universe, she suddenly realizes she is in a dream. So, the coffee in her cup starts to tremble and the world around her dissolves.
Let’s just say I provide opportunities.”
The enigmatic character played by Valerio Mastandrea drinks litres of coffee because he has to stay awake. Sitting at the table of a snack bar, he jots down notes in a mysterious exercise book while men and women go to him at all hours of the day and night with all kinds of requests. He never refuses to help but asks them to make a choice, a terrible one at times, or sometimes one that is so simple it takes them aback. These personages reveal the best or worst side of their character but they never fail to amaze. Luckily, the ever smiling Angela (Sabrina Ferilli) provides comfort on the darkest days.
Compliments fail to soften Jimmy (Quentin Tarantino) who, when he sees Jules (Samuel Lee Jackson) and Vincent (John Travolta) drop in early in the morning, knows there’s bound to be trouble. As he awaits Mr. Wolf’s timely intervention what else can he do but enjoy his first-rate coffee because, as Jules says: “Goddamn Jimmie, this is some
serious gourmet shit. Me an‘ Vincent woulda been satisfied with freeze-dried Tasters Choice. You spring this gourmet fxxxxn‘ shit on us.”
A Coffee in Berlin
Sure, we've got two kinds: the Arabica and the Columbia Morning.
Which coffee tastes most like a regular coffee?”
Sometimes a cup of coffee can put you in a good mood this seems to be unachievable for Niko. It’s a bad day, very bad: his girlfriend has left him, his cash card does not work, his father has stopped sending him money. The boy is penniless and down in the dumps. He finds himself wandering around Berlin looking for a cup of hot black coffee but all he finds is a series of unexpected tragicomic events. Luckily he still has music and a sense of self-irony.
And what if coffee was aphrodisiacal? After all, the characters of Ethan Hawke and Julie Delpy did not even know each other before meeting on the train. Then, they professed their love in a Viennese venue, making this one of the most romantic stories of the nineties.
The Usual Suspects
Coffee reawakens the mind, but for Detective Dave Kujan (Chazz Palminteri) it would have been better to go on harbouring the illusion that he had solved the case. A ship had exploded mysteriously. The entire reconstruction of the facts takes place through the recount of Verbal Kint, a former corrupt police officer who is involved in the events. At the end of the film, the detective seems to have identified the real culprit, he releases the policeman, sits on his desk, chats with a colleague and lifts a cup of hot coffee to his lips. Then, all of a sudden, he lets the cup drop on the floor. He has just realized that he has been manipulated. The spilled coffee oozes between the pieces of broken crockery as the detective’s certainty crumbles.