Super fun film. Is it full of stereotypes and kind of sexist and misogynist? Hell yea but who cares, this is great escapism cinema. Loren looked possibly her loveliest and portrayed her character with a lighthearted gusto, while Marcello hammed it up to hilariously equal aplomb. De Sica is one of my fav Italian directors, but this is probably one of his lightest films in terms of impact. 4 stars though, a fun ride.
Vittorio De Sica is often not given enough credit when unfairly compared to the likes of Fellini and Visconti, but he does make a solid romantic comedy. Is it a bit melodramatic? Sure, but so was all of Italy in the 1960's. Marcello Mastroianni is as charming and funny as ever, and Sophia Loren is magnificent and beautiful. Her iconic curtain scene is alone worth it.
a bit too melodramatic and saccharine near the end (fighting into a kiss then finally pronouncing your love for each other ultimately resulting in marriage? really?) the scene where the boys reunite and Riccardo eats the pastry the exact same way is really cute though.
Contrary to popular opinion, I don't think this film works well at all. The comedy falls flat, the drama is forced and everything feels overly drawn out with no real depth to fill the space. I think De Sica was the least interesting of his generation of filmmakers. Watching Marcello makes the film watchable. Otherwise, it's no better than any standard American romantic comedy.
This is that side of Italian cinema I hate. De Sica does love his melodramas. Divorce Italian Style was a genuine commentary on Italian society. This is "Men must be tricked into marriage." He wants to marry the virgin, not the whore. Which is a double standard for the ladies man. Lots of bad messages for women, especially since marriage is better for men than it is women.