Avanti! (1972)



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Movie Info

An uptight businessman travels to Italy where he falls in love with the daughter of his late father's mistress.

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Jack Lemmon
as Wendell Armbruster, Jr.
Juliet Mills
as Pamela Piggott
Clive Revill
as Carlo Carlucci
Edward Andrews
as J.J. Blodgett
Franco Angrisano
as Arnold Trotta
Pippo Franco
as Mattarazzo
Francesco Angrisano
as Arnold Trotta
Franco Acampora
as Armando Trotta
Raffaele Mottola
as Passport Officer
Lino Coletta
as Cipriani
Harry Ray
as Dr. Fleischmann
Guidarino Guidi
as Maitre D'
Janet Agren
as First Nurse
Yanti Somer
as Second Nurse
Maria Rosa Sclauzero
as First Hostess
Melu Valente
as Second Hostess
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Critic Reviews for Avanti!

All Critics (16) | Top Critics (4)

Marvellous performances from Lemmon and Mills.

Jun 24, 2006 | Full Review…
Time Out
Top Critic

Avanti! isn't a laugh-a-minute kind of a movie, and it's too long by maybe half an hour.

Oct 23, 2004 | Rating: 2.5/4 | Full Review…

Intermittently funny, charming, cute and, unfortunately, over-long.

Jan 1, 2000 | Rating: 2.5/5 | Full Review…

This 1972 release is the most underrated of all Billy Wilder comedies and arguably the one that comes closest to the sweet mastery and lilting grace of his mentor, Ernst Lubitsch.

Jan 1, 2000 | Full Review…

There is a lot of Billy Wilder in [Avanti!], including the idea that age is a state of mind. The film doesn't all work, [but] when the rigid Armbruster warms up on a sunny rock,... Wilder is telling us something that is more than just fun.

Mar 24, 2009 | Rating: 3.0/5 | Full Review…

Wilder justifies this film's length (144 minutes) with its loving, carefree and even relaxing Italian vacation atmosphere.

Aug 1, 2008 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Avanti!


Jack Lemmon is a one note rich and ugly American over in Italy to see about the interment of his father, unexpectedly dead while on vacation. Juliet mills is (unfortunately) the one note European sex goddess in Italy on a similar mission. it plays somewhat better than it sounds, but not by much as there is little real chemistry between the leads, mills throwing herself at lemmon inexplicably until he inexplicably relents. meh.

Kevin M. Williams
Kevin M. Williams

Super Reviewer

Avanti! is the first Jack Lemmon film that I was slightly irritated by, it's incredibly drawn out and could have been condensed to a much more watchable length. The actual plot of the dark comedy is quite a funny situation, but isn't as good as other Lemmon films.

Lady D'arbanville
Lady D'arbanville

Super Reviewer

Another funny comedy with Jack Lemmon falling in love in Italy. Again he is directed by Wilder, and the result is a good comedy. If you're a fan of either of them, check out this movie.

Aj V
Aj V

Super Reviewer


Another one of the many films Wilder made with Jack Lemmon. Lemmon is a high strung American executive always in a hurry and unable to understand the Italian way of slowing down and enjoying life. He goes to an Italian island to collect his father who died in a car accident. His father died with his secret mistress beside him. The daughter, Juliet Mills, of the woman has come to the island from England to collect her mother too. Lemmon learns of his father having a mistress from her and from the hotel staff. Everyone at the hotel including Clive Revill, (now an Italian) the manager of the hotel, knows that the affair had been going on for a month every summer for ten years! Lemmon struggles with these facts he never knew about his father and deals with many humorous complications in arranging to take his father home to a big media covered funeral while keeping the affair a secret. All the hotel staff think the younger couple look like his father and her mother, so of course a romantic situation develops. Armbruster Jr. (Lemmon) says he's hip enough to realize there's nothing wrong with a one night stand, or even many short affairs, but a long-term affair like his father had, that's cheating on his mother. Hhmmm!? Miss Piggott (Mills) wants to make the point that their long-term affair was based on love, that they could enjoy life and be happy in Italy, and that it was beautiful. She suggests they be buried side by side on this Italian island where they were happier. Miss Piggott eventually helps Armbruster Jr. learn a bit of Italian and enjoy life. When a servant knocks at your door in the hotel to clean your room and asks "permiso," you can answer "avanti," or "come in," "your permitted." It is by this little play on words that Lemmon and Mills realize they are in love. Lemmon's character has a wife at home too, but the film ends with these two new lovers basically promising to meet each summer on this island like their parents did. It was a colorful quirky movie, but when you think about it the message is that infidelity isn't that bad.

Byron Brubaker
Byron Brubaker

Super Reviewer

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