|ROME ADVENTURE (director/writer: Delmer Daves; screenwriter: from the novel Lovers Must Learn by Irving Fineman; cinematographer: Charles Lawton; editor: William Ziegler; music: Max Steiner; cast: Troy Donahue (Don Porter), Angie Dickinson (Lyda Kent), Rossano Brazzi (Roberto Orlandi), Suzanne Pleshette (Prudence Bell), Constance Ford (Daisy Bronson), Al Hirt (Himself), Hampton Fancher (Albert Stillwell), Iphigenie Castiglioni (Contessa), Chad Everett (Young man), Gertrude Flynn (Mrs. Riggs); Runtime: 119; MPAA Rating: NR; producer: Delmer Daves; Warner Home Video; 1962)|
by Dennis Schwartz
sluggish romantic melodrama works best as a travelogue
of Rome. Director and writer Delmer Daves ("Parrish"/"A
Summer Place"/"Spencer's Mountain") gives it a
corny pedestrian feel, and the characters are all
wooden stereotypes. If you dig sappy romancers, this
is the 'mother load.' It's adapted from the 1932
novel Lovers Must Learn by
(Suzanne Pleshette, her second movie and first
starring role) is a 21-year-old
virgin assistant librarian at a stuffy
women's college in Connecticut, who quits when
challenged by administrators for lending to a
female student her own copy of a banned book on
love. She decides to go to Italy to discover for
herself the meaning of love. En route by
ship, Prudence meets the socially awkward
Etruscan scholar from America Albert Stillwell (Hampton Fancher)
and a Roman playboy charmer Roberto Orlandi
In Rome, the sophisticated Italian, after failing at
his attempt to become Prudence's lover, hooks up his
two companion voyagers to stay in the boarding house
of the Contessa (Iphigenie Castiglioni).
The Contessa hooks Prudence up with a clerk job at an
American book store. Also staying in the boarding
house is hunky American architectural student Don
Porter (Troy Donahue). He's in a twit
because his wealthy American painter girlfriend Lyda (Angie
Dickinson) dumps him to go paint in Switzerland.
Predictably Don and Prudence begin a romance.
and Donahue fell in love on the set and were married
after the film wrapped. Warners paid for the big
bash. I believe the marriage lasted nine months.
REVIEWED ON 4/16/2015 GRADE: C
Dennis Schwartz: "Ozus' World Movie Reviews"
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