Rome Adventure Reviews
The bad: the script. Aside from the usual romcom formula which I personally can look past, there is so much sappiness in some scenes, such as the one where the young lovers comment on raindrops rolling down a window, that I thought it was about at the middle-school level of writing (and that may be insulting to middle-schoolers). In addition to that, Troy Donahue is so wooden he's almost robotic. I know he was (and perhaps still is) a heartthrob to women, but my god, he's so bad you may laugh out loud.
The ugly: the sexism. There are two sides to this type of thing in an old movie: on one hand, it does reflect the time period, so even as we shake our heads over some things, it is educational. On the other hand, you may cringe as Pleshette's friend in the bookstore says she stayed in Italy because, as she puts it, "The first time a good-looking Italian man pinched my bottom, I said, 'This is for me!'" You may also of course laugh over such a line, and then cringe. Near the beginning a very recent acquaintance to Pleshette enters her room, holds her slinky nightgown up to her, and wonder aloud what her body would look like in it. In the middle in the jazz club, you'll see a friend of Donohue's call his girlfriend over to their table, and then display "this chick I picked up in Capri" as a piece of meat, leering and ogling as she turns back and forth, imploring Donhue to "dig her figure", all without her saying a word. There are others but I'm going on too long as it is. It's not so bad as to be outrageous (depending on where your line is), but it does go so counter to Pleshette's strong stand against book censorship in the beginning of the film that is extra disappointing.