The Secret of Santa Vittoria - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

The Secret of Santa Vittoria Reviews

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March 19, 2014
An amusing WW II story, but the sort of film you usually fall asleep in front of on a Sunday afternoon.
½ September 5, 2013
Fairly faithful adaptation of the novel, but overlong.
August 6, 2013
The Secret of Santa Vittoria , is one of my favourite movies of all times with the cast of some of the greatest actors & actresses an, I'll drink to this film(of course a Italian wine!) Gracia & Ciao.
March 9, 2013
Lots of heart for this movie
September 13, 2012
Pure Joy. Anthony Quinn will never cease to amaze me at just how he can possess both the alpha-male sexual magnetism and the boyishly charming goofiness :)
Super Reviewer
½ August 31, 2012
A charming cast invigorates this predictable tale of small town Italian mountain villagers outwitting the mean old greedy Nazis at the end of WWll, hiding a lot of wine that the Krauts want to appropriate. Quinn, Magnani, and Giannini shine.
½ July 14, 2011
This is a thoroughly charming little movie. I'd never heard of it and didn't know what it was at all going into it, but the characters really captured my attention, especially Anthony Quinn as Bombolini. The subplot with the Contessa and the soldier was uninteresting and unnecessary, but it took up only a tiny portion of the movie, and the rest of it told a great story.
July 6, 2011
Overall quite an entertaining and amusing movie....not the usual sad WWII movie
December 24, 2010
Good laughs. Nice suggestion Paul. Next, The Sicilian Girl.
½ October 17, 2010
Si en esa época hubiese existido Acción Democrática. Bombolini hubiese sido adeco... Un clásico para entretenerse
May 24, 2010
Anthony Quinn looks like he is play "Zobra the Greek" again as a clownish Italian in director Stanley Kramer's predictable but entertaining comedy-drama "The Secret of Santa Vittoria," a World War II story that takes place in a hill town where wine is the chief virtue. There is a little too much comedy and not nearly enough edgy drama in this 139-minute film that won a Golden Globe. As the story unfolds, the citizens of Santa Vittoria rejoice when they learn that the tyrant dictator Mussolini has been deposed. The protagonist Italo Bombolini (Anthony Quinn) gets roaring drunk on wine and ascends the water tower to paint out a pro-Mussolini slogan that he had painted on the structure some 20 years ago. "Asphalt Jungle" scenarist Ben Maddow and "The Ladykillers" scribe William Rose based their uneven but okay screenplay on Robert Crichton's novel about a town that hides a million bottles of wine from the occupying forces of the German army. What makes this comedy-drama worth watching are the performances of Quinn, Anna Magnani, Virna Lisa, and Hardy Kruger. Initially, everybody thinks that Italo is a complete buffoon so they make him mayor. He surprises them and uses political theorist Niccolo Machiavelli's tract "The Prince" as a guide to his administration. Before long he has the entire town eating out of his hand with the sole exception of his harridan wife, Rosa (Anna Magnani of "The Red Rose"), who cannot stand the sight of him. A teenager named Fabio (Giancarlo Giannini of "Quantum of Solace") is in love with Italo's daughter, but he leaves the town so he can continue his education at the university. When he arrives at the university, Fabio learns that the Germans will occupy Santa Vittoria in a few week and most likely confiscate the town's supply of wine. He rides his bicycle back home and warns Italo, and the citizens scramble to hide the wine. Initially, they try to cart it off to a Roman cave, but all the carts seem to breakdown and there is a massive traffic jam in the town square. Reluctantly, Italo changes his plans and a Fascist deserter, Tufa (Sergio Franchi of "Curse of the Red Butterfly") tells him to use the entire town in the form of two human chains to hand the bottles of wine one-by-one to each other over a half-mile to get the wine safely to the Roman caves. Mind you, they have to pause because the citizens start to get careless and drop bottles. One of Italo's closest advisors suggests that Italo keep 300-thousand bottles of wine to give to the Nazis because they know the enemy will not believe them if they hide all of the wine. Eventually, they hide the wine and double-brick up the passageways. Captain von Prum (Hardy Kruger of "The Wild Geese") arrives with a small detachment of German troops and they occupy the town. Von Prum and Italo bargain about the percentage of wine that the town must give up to the Germans, while von Prum actively tries to romance Caterina Malatesta (Italian beauty Virna Lisa of "Queen Margot") who has fallen in love with the Fascist deserter. Everything looks rosy until the Gestapo show up and explain that the bookkeepers at the winery out-of-town calculate that over a million bottles of wine have not been accounted for. Von Prum spends 36 hours turning the town inside out, but he finds nothing. The Gestapo take two hostages and torture them in the Roman caves where the wine is hidden under their noses, but the hostages are Fascists who were being held captive by the townspeople. The Gestapo learn nothing from the discredited Fascists and the Germans leave Santa Vittoria and Italo Bombolini is celebrated as a hero and he wins a renewal of respect from his bitter wife.
April 17, 2010
watch the movie for the original scene that has been copied in SHOLAY
½ September 20, 2009
an often overlooked gem
½ June 28, 2009
Quinn is great, but the movie is overlong and far less substantial than Kramer's best films.
May 1, 2009
Had it's moments and it was filled with a lot of light hearted humor.
½ December 20, 2008
i said i'm into wine-themed movies and anthony quinn rocks. no more explanation is necessary. viva bombolini!
½ August 8, 2008
A charming film, well worth the time to find.
Super Reviewer
July 3, 2008
want to see this because it won best comedy or musical picture at the golden globes
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