Love in Rome (1960)
"Un amore a Roma" (original title)

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Cast overview, first billed only:
Anna Padoan
Peter Baldwin ...
Marcello Cenni
Claudio Gora ...
Engineer Curtatoni
Eleonora Curtatoni
Armando Romeo ...
Nello D'Amore
Umberto Orsini ...
Peppino Barlacchi
Maria Laura Rocca ...
Curtatoni's wife (as Laura Rocca)
Anne White
Fanfulla ...
The comic actor
Renato Montalbano
Anna Glori
Enrico Glori
Gianni Musy
Jacques Sernas ...
Tony Meneghini


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Drama | Romance


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Release Date:

24 November 1960 (Italy)  »

Also Known As:

Un amor en Roma  »

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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User Reviews

LOVE IN ROME (Dino Risi, 1960) ***
23 June 2008 | by (Naxxar, Malta) – See all my reviews

The plot of this little-known but very well-made romantic drama (from the generic title, one could well mistake it for just another example of teen-oriented fluff which proliferated in Italy at this time!) anticipates high-profile works by acclaimed film-makers such as Joseph Losey’s EVA (1962) and John Schlesinger’s Oscar-winning DARLING (1965). Here, the femme fatale-ish heroine (who can’t bring herself to remain faithful to her true love for very long) is played by luscious French starlet Mylene Demongeot – in what is probably her most significant role; the hero by American Peter Baldwin, whom I best recall from THE GHOST (1963) – one of the better examples of Italian Gothic Horror.

As with the afore-mentioned EVA, the heroine has set her sights on a movie career: however, she only seems to be able to secure parts in low-brow peplums (of which Demongeot herself made a few!)…and, amusingly, one of the country’s foremost film-makers – Vittorio De Sica – turns up in a cameo as the flustered director of one of them!! Still, the real protagonist here is Baldwin – who, being an essayist, is made to provide first-person commentary to smooth over occasional gaps in the narrative (the events occur over a number of months at least); in fact, he’s himself involved with two other women during the course of the film – Elsa Martinelli (the film even begins with the two having a row at night in Rome’s famed Piazza di Spagna) and Maria Perschy (who happens to be the intelligent but virtuous daughter of a friend of Baldwin’s father, a lecher who numbers Demongeot among his flings!). Though given obviously subsidiary roles, both Martinelli and Perschy play flesh-and-blood characters rather than mere stereotypes (frustrated with Demongeot’s capricious nature, at one point the hero proposes to upper-class Perschy but is unable to follow it through); the cast also includes Claudio Gora (appearing as Perschy’s father) and, as two of the heroine’s copious conquests, Jacques Sernas and Umberto Orsini.

While the film is adult, perceptive and generally absorbing, it’s not quite in the same league as, say, the comparable work of Michelangelo Antonioni: its main flaw in this regard has to do with the contrived plotting of the latter stages, which renders the whole slightly tiresome by the end; on the other hand, the lighting (alternately gleaming and shadowy) is exquisite throughout – giving LOVE IN ROME not only a pleasingly polished look but a genuine sense of style. Incidentally, given Risi’s reputation for caustic humor, one welcomes the De Sica incident I referred to earlier amid all the gloom, or the subtle yet side-splitting image of a fat middle-aged man apathetically smoking and gulping down food (simultaneously) at a party while Baldwin is frantically trying to reach Demongoet on the phone; there’s also a cute in-joke, wherein the aspiring-actress heroine says she had already appeared in a film called POVERI MA BELLI (1957) – directed by none other than Dino Risi himself! – but that her part had ended up on the cutting-room floor!

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