Sabrina (1954)

Sabrina
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ADULT THEME

Director: Billy Wilder
Actors: Humphrey Bogart, William Holden, Audrey Hepburn, John Williams, Martha Hyer, Walter Hampden, Joan Vohs

Sabrina is charming, humorous and aglow with some of Hollywood's greatest stars. Humphrey Bogart, William Holden and Audrey Hepburn star in a Cinderella story directed by renowned filmmaker Billy Wilder (Sunset Boulevard, Some Like It Hot). Bogie and Holden are the mega-rich Larrabee brothers of Long Island. Bogie's all work, Holden's all playboy. But when Sabrina, daughter of the family's chauffeur, returns from Paris all grown up and glamorous, the stage is set for some family fireworks as the brothers fall under the spell of Hepburn's delightful charms.

DVD
Status: Normal
Run time: 109mins
Origin: UNITED STATES
Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
Sabrina
by Jess Lomas,

“Once upon a time, on the north shore of Long Island, some thirty miles from New York, there lived a small girl on a large estate.” So begins Billy Wilder’s 1954 romantic comedy, Sabrina, the second Hollywood feature for the original pixie girl, Audrey Hepburn. Wilder is a true Hollywood legend; someone who excelled at not only writing screenplays but at directing and producing (three credits he held on Sabrina). He adapted the story to the screen from Samuel A. Taylor’s play, Sabrina Fair, and shared writing credits with Taylor and Ernest Lehman. The picture begins with the wide-eyed, naïve daughter of a chauffeur, Sabrina Fairchild, lusting over David Larrabee (William Holden), the youngest son of her father’s wealthy employers. David is a playboy, with no responsibilities or interest ...

“Once upon a time, on the north shore of Long Island, some thirty miles from New York, there lived a small girl on a large estate.” So begins Billy Wilder’s 1954 romantic comedy, Sabrina, the second Hollywood feature for the original pixie girl, Audrey Hepburn.

Wilder is a true Hollywood legend; someone who excelled at not only writing screenplays but at directing and producing (three credits he held on Sabrina). He adapted the story to the screen from Samuel A. Taylor’s play, Sabrina Fair, and shared writing credits with Taylor and Ernest Lehman.

The picture begins with the wide-eyed, naïve daughter of a chauffeur, Sabrina Fairchild, lusting over David Larrabee (William Holden), the youngest son of her father’s wealthy employers. David is a playboy, with no responsibilities or interest in the family business; he’s already been married three times and doesn’t entertain Sabrina’s affections. His older brother Linus (Humphrey Bogart) is the complete opposite, and for him love takes a backseat to business.

After Sabrina returns from a two year sabbatical in Paris - to attend culinary school - she is a changed young woman; poised, finely dressed and well spoken. She finally catches the eye of David; it’s a pity that he’s engaged to be married. Or is it? A love triangle between Sabrina, David and Linus begins, and she must choose between the boy she’s always loved and the man she finds herself falling for.

While Sabrina isn’t as consistently witty as some of Wilder’s other films, it is one of his most romantic, and the strange pairing of Humphrey Bogart and Audrey Hepburn surprisingly works. That said, if I could wave a magic wand and see an alternate version of this film - one where Cary Grant didn’t decline the role of Linus - I’d be quite intrigued to see how that pairing would have played out.

Sabrina went on to be nominated for six Academy Awards, including Best Screenplay, Best Director and Best Actress, winning only one, for Best Costume Design. A sumptuous mix of heart and laughs, Sabrina is a delightful classic that deserves revisiting.

4/5

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Member Reviews (15)

Anita L.
says
I didn't really like this movie. Sabrina, the poor chauffeurs daughter loves one of the rich sons of the man her father works for. She is ignored by the one she loves until after she returns from a trip to Paris. Then the man and his brother compete for her affections.
Posted Wednesday, 3 November 2010 See my other reviews
Bev M.
says
Posted Monday, 26 May 2008 See my other reviews
Rhoda J.
says
Posted Sunday, 11 May 2008 See my other reviews
Barry O.
says
Mum loved it so much she is going to buy it!
Posted Thursday, 30 August 2007 See my other reviews
Elizabeth D.
says
Posted Thursday, 4 January 2007 See my other reviews
David P.
says
An excellent cast and a tight, humerous script help make this film a true classic.
Posted Monday, 20 November 2006 See my other reviews
Jarrod T.
says
Better than the remake.
Posted Friday, 4 August 2006 See my other reviews
Tahli G.
says
lovely and old fashioned. much better than the remake with harrison ford etc
Posted Saturday, 28 January 2006 See my other reviews
Breaker
says
Great classic movie, still stands up well today. The picture is very clear. Audrey Hepburn in one of her most delightful roles.
Posted Tuesday, 15 November 2005 See my other reviews
Jay D.
says
Posted Monday, 29 August 2005 See my other reviews
Megan Peniston-Bird
says
Posted Monday, 18 July 2005 See my other reviews
Jeff
says
An old classic with all the old stars.
Posted Thursday, 23 June 2005 See my other reviews
Peter Bedo
says
Audrey really does still the show here, as in most of her movies. On second viewing this film does stand up pretty well, probably thanks largely to Wyler's direction. Humphrey looks pretty grumpy here though and it is hard to see why a young pretty girl like Sabrina would switch her allegience from the dashing David (Holden). Only in movies!
Posted Monday, 30 May 2005 See my other reviews
Linda Craig
says
Hollywood film making at its best. Hepburn is, as usual, brilliant as Sabrina, as is Bogart as the stuffy brother Linus. Holden (Scarface) adds just the right comic touch as the womanising David. Love the supporting cast too. There is also a short documentary on the making of this pic. If you like this try Roman Holiday, the movie that made Hepburn a star.
Posted Wednesday, 5 January 2005 See my other reviews
JoeBlow
says
A real oldtimer and a pleasure to watch the performance of Audrey Hepburn.