best film: My Fair Lady and I don’t think it’s terribly close with her second best film (which could be Sabrina or Charade). I think she’s stronger in some of her films than the overall film is (Roman Holiday, Breakfast at Tiffany’s) but My Fair Lady is a glowing exception. It’s so handsomely mounted on a large canvas by Cukor and of course Rex Harrison is perfection in the co-lead role. Hepburn doesn’t sing but she’s near his equal and this is a major feather in her cap.

best performance:  Sabrina. Hepburn is so damn good and so consistently good that the difference between this and her like 9th best performance (Funny Face or Robin and Marion) is pretty minute. But if forced to choose I’m going with her work here in Wilder’s Sabrina so clearly out-acting Humphrey Bogart and William Holden. She’s truly special here.

stylistic innovations/traits:  Hepburn has become an icon of style (it’s hard to find stills of her from her movies because it’s all about her hair or clothes on internet searches). She could play both a child-like nymph and clearly a romantic, gracefully leading lady. In fact, most of her great roles feature a character duality or transformation (Sabrina she goes abroad and comes back different, Roman Holiday she’s a princess in disguise, My Fair Lady she goes from a flower girl, etc). She had charisma and honesty in every performance. She’s lead or co-lead in 12 films and terrific in all of them. Her weakness would be that she not in enough top-level films.

directors worked with:  Donen (3), Wilder (2), Wyler (2) and Cukor once

Top 5 Performances:

  1. Sabrina
  2. Roman Holiday
  3. Breakfast at Tiffany’s
  4. My Fair Lady
  5. Charade

Archiveable films

1951- The Lavender Hill Mob
1953- Roman Holiday
1954- Sabrina
1956- War and Peace
1957- Funny Face
1957- Love in the Afternoon
1959- The Nun’s Story
1961- Breakfast at Tiffany’s
1963- Charade
1964- My Fair Lady
1966- How To Steal a Million
1967- Two For the Road
1967- Wait Until Dark
1976- Robin and Marion