A separated attorney in Rio sees an English teaching American widow and tries to woo her.A separated attorney in Rio sees an English teaching American widow and tries to woo her.A separated attorney in Rio sees an English teaching American widow and tries to woo her.
The film is about the romance between an American woman who teaches English to the wealthy and her corporate lawyer student who bears a striking resemblance to Marcello Mastroianni. Both of them are supposed to be in their early to mid-forties.
The age aspect is one problem I have with this film. I'm not against middle-age romance on film, but it's just so obvious that Antonio Fagundes is closer to fifty.
Another problem I have is with Amy Irving's acting skills. At times, it's obvious she's reading straight off a cue card. Good actors never let us see them working.
But the biggest complaint I have about this film is the plot, or rather the lack thereof. The film is filled with lots of confusing little subplots, some of which never resolve themselves. This, I guess, is to distract the audience from the fact that the main plot is so threadbare.
Many American critics have praised this film. This is largely, I believe, because it is not an American film and was not bankrolled by a major Hollywood studio. However, I always use the same barometer to judge a film, regardless of its origin or pedigree. I give this film the same criticism I would give to a film such as "How Stella Got Her Groove Back" or "The Horse Whisperer": It's beautiful to look at, but once you get past the scenery and the actors' looks, there's not much left. I give this film a 6 out of 10.
- Jul 8, 2000