The second in a trilogy of movies about Elisabeth "Sissi" of Austria, the film chronicles the married life of the young empress as she tries to adjust to formal and strict life in the palace and an overbearing mother-in-law.
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16 year old princess Elisabeth, 'Sissi', follows her mother and sister Helene to the Austrian court in Ischl, where the engagement between Helene and the young emperor Franz Josef will be announced. But he meets Sissi when she's out fishing and falls in love with her. Sissi also loves Franz Josef but a marriage with him comes with a bonus, his arrogant and headstrong mother. Written by
"Sissi" is the first part of a trilogy about the Austrian princess/empress Elisabeth in Bavaria, aka Sissi (Romy Schneider). The teenage princess lives happily in Bavaria with her parents, Duke Max (Gustav Knuth) and Duchess Ludovika (Magda Schneider, Romy's real life mother), and siblings. When Ludovika is invited by her sister, Archduchess Sophie (Vilma Degischer), to take Helene, Sissi's older sister, to the Austrian court in Ischl, in order to arrange a royal engagement for Helene and the young emperor Franz Joseph (Karlheinz Böhm), Sissi goes along. However, nobody could imagine that Franz would fall in love with the spontaneous, childish Sissi, instead of the sophisticated Helene.
"Sissi" is nothing more than a naïve, romantic matinée but a very well done romantic matinée! Romy Schneider shines as the young princess, she's the heart of the movie. It's impossible not to fall in love with her gorgeous smile and sweet manners.
Released in the same year as another unforgettable romance ("Picnic", with William Holden, Kim Novak and Rosalind Russell), "Sissi" may not be called a masterpiece. However, I cannot give anything less than a "10" to a movie that makes you feel good and smile even during the hardest times.
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