Something From Tiffany’s (Review) – A Gentle Festive Gift

DIRECTOR: Daryl Wein

CAST: Zoey Deutch, Kendrick Sampson, Ray Nicholson, Shay Mitchell, Leah Jeffries, Jojo T. Gibbs, Javicia Leslie, Chido Nwokocha, Stephanie Shepherd, Michael Roark

RUNNING TIME: 87 mins

CERTIFICATE: PG

BASICALLY…: A purchase mix-up at Tiffany’s unexpectedly brings together two different couples…

NOW FOR THE REVIEW…

With less than two weeks to go until Christmas, people are rushing out to get their loved ones the best gifts that they can possibly afford, but for the slightly more affluent New York crowd, one possible destination might be the famous Tiffany’s on Fifth Avenue – and yes, I know that there are lots of other locations too, including a handful in the UK, but I’m talking specifically about the one that everyone knows: the one whose windows Holly Golightly peered into at the start of Breakfast At Tiffany’s. It is at this flagship location where things are kicked into gear in the new Amazon festive rom-com Something From Tiffany’s, but luckily this isn’t a feature-length commercial for the high-end department store, and is instead a harmless and reasonably charming flick that features the brand in a non-intrusive and well-balanced manner.

Beginning with days left until Christmas, two different men wander into Tiffany’s to seek out seperate gifts: Ethan (Kendrick Sampson), a struggling writer with his young daughter Daisy (Leah Jeffries) in tow, is looking for an engagement ring to propose with to his girlfriend Vanessa (Shay Mitchell), while Gary (Ray Nicholson) is half-heartedly asking for some earrings for Rachel (Zoey Deutch), his baker girlfriend. However, when Gary is accidentally hit by a car outside the store, his box gets mixed up with Ethan’s, and so on Christmas Day their respective girlfriends receive unexpected gifts, causing Ethan to seek out Rachel and try to get his ring back; Rachel, meanwhile, is surprised but also unsure about her new engagement to the arrogant Gary, and so she ends up striking a strong bond with Ethan when they keep running in to each other.

Naturally, as they often tend to do in rom-coms of this particular template, you know exactly where it’s all going to go. However, Something From Tiffany’s is more or less aware of what kind of film it’s supposed to be, and doesn’t attempt to hide its warm, doughy centre (an appropriate metaphor, since there are many scenes here that take place in a bakery) amidst a series of familiar but serviceable conventions. It’s the kind of festive-themed romance movie that’s maybe a bit too sophisticated for the Hallmark Channel, but also too familiar and fanciful to be taken seriously amidst the more mainstream holiday fare, settling for a nice in-between where you can switch your mind off from all the leaps in logic it makes while still feeling comfortable with its festive atmosphere that doesn’t go too overboard with itself. Director Daryl Wein and writer Tamara Chestna (adapting Melissa Hill’s novel of the same name) find even ground with stock Christmas traits that are used sparingly, but still with enough of a presence to make you feel that soft feeling inside you get whenever the holidays come around.

It helps that it’s carried by a cast of simple yet entirely charming characters that are easy to like, regardless of whichever rom-com stereotype they fulfil. Primary amongst them are Zoey Deutch and Kendrick Sampson, who have very good romantic chemistry with each other, and individually go a pretty good job of making their characters ones that you can root for without any difficulty, even when the plot takes one too many convoluted turns with their parallel arcs. There’s also some fine standout support from Jojo T. Gibbs, who between this and Fresh from earlier this year has had a banner year of playing the best friend of the romantic lead who gets a little too into their bestie’s love life (though in this one, there’s far less gnarly gore); in fairness, though, she does a good job of filling in that particular archetype, but one hopes that she eventually gets to play a role in a feature film where she doesn’t have to focus her entire life on who her (white) friend is having intimate feelings for.

Sure, it’s derivative of a lot of typical romantic-comedies, particularly doubling down on the conventions as it fast approaches its third act, and it’s the kind of plot that gets so unnecessarily convoluted that you wonder if everything would be solved sooner by a simple explanation or two, but as ever it’s all about the execution of said familiar traits, and Something From Tiffany’s ends up being charming in its familiarity. If nothing else, it’s a festive rom-com that does a fine job of being exactly the movie you’d think it’ll be, and is comfortable enough in its own skin that it doesn’t try to be anything that it’s not. It has a sweet atmosphere, charming performances, and enough festive goodness to make you feel all nice and warm inside, which ultimately does help you to look past the stuff that you’ve undoubtedly seen in other movies before this one.

It’s not exactly the kind of top-price piece of jewellery you would expect to find in such a fancy boutique store like Tiffany’s but it’s sparkly and well-made enough to put a smile on just about anyone’s face when they open it up in time for the holidays.

SO, TO SUM UP…

Something from Tiffany’s is a sweet festive rom-com that rides on the derivative coattails of numerous other similar movies, but still manages to leave a warm feeling inside thanks to its likeable cast and a heartfelt, if slightly convoluted, main plot.

Something From Tiffany’s is now available to stream on Amazon Prime Video.

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