Three American women, rooming together while working abroad in Rome, Italy, hope for romance and marriage. Frances, oldest of the three, has been fifteen years a secretary to novelist John Frederick Shadwell, a man whom she loves but whose reclusive nature prompts most people to believe him long since dead. Anita, one week away from returning to America (under the claim of getting married), finally bucks company rules (and gets caught) by finally accepting an invitation from an Italian co-worker to visit his family's farm for his sister's wedding. Newly arrived Maria soon sets her generally innocent eyes on Dino di Cessi, an actual prince with a reputation for womanizing, and makes a play for him by making herself his perfect match.Written by
At the beginning of the final scene at the Trevi fountain, the fountain is dry and being cleaned. While the actors are there, the fountain begins flowing again; when the actors leave, the fountain is completely full -- not a possibility given the size of the fountain and the period of time over which the scene occurs. See more »
He's nice! Oh, I don't believe he's the wolf you say. Why, he looks as innocent as a little boy.
Oh, that he does. But, don't try taking him on your lap and mother him. You'll find yourself suddenly screaming for the police.
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Pleasant locales but it's still little more than a travelogue...
Time hasn't been kind to certain films and THREE COINS IN THE FOUNTAIN is one of them. The story at its center is trite and only exists in order to show the splendors of Rome in color and CinemaScope to lure patrons away from their television sets when the film was made, in the mid-'50s.
The only performers emerging from the film unscathed are JEAN PETERS, gorgeous as a secretary looking for romance away from the office, and the two men who are in their physical prime and give the film's most ingratiating performances--ROSSANO BRAZZI and LOUIS JOURDAN, both being the prototypes of the sort of European men American women find so attractive.
DOROTHY McGUIRE is saddled with the role of a spinster (of 38) whose object of affection is CLIFTON WEBB (mid-'60s) who seems an odd choice for any woman and tries hard to be his usual urbane self. Nor is MAGGIE MacNAMARA any help as a conniving American girl who diligently learns the likes and dislikes of the man (Jourdan) she plans to trap into marriage. Miss MacNamara too often seems more annoying than charming.
But it's harmless fluff, nicely staged in real Italian locales so that there's something to look at when things get dull--as they often do. Surprisingly, the film--which gets off to a nice start with a rendition of the title song by Frank Sinatra--was nominated for a Best Picture Oscar.
Summing up: No surprises here, just a dull story that gets an occasional lift from the romance between Peters and Brazzi which is the best, but briefest, part of the whole film. As a story, it's all too familiar by now but Jean Negulesco manages to combine story and scenery with a fluid touch, disguising the fact that it's little more than a pleasant travelogue.
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