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USA 1953
Directed by
William Wyler
119 minutes
Rated G

Reviewed by
Bernard Hemingway
3 stars

Roman Holiday

This romantic comedy about a cosseted and bored heiress to some fictional throne who escapes her guardians and falls in love for a day with an American newsman in a bit of a slog these days. Rome’s much-featured touristic delights which pad out the genteel dalliance are not the fascinating exotica they were back then and the film is technically handicapped by the clunky shifts from exteriors to studio back-projections and the clumsy use of body-doubles for the ll-known scooter sequence. The film does however have some wonderful black and white cinematography by Frank Planer and Henry Alekan and, most notably, the perfectly-cast Audrey Hepburn who won an Oscar for Best Actress in her screen debut as the embodiment of the popular ideal for young women in the 1950s - a virgin princess -  who for a day is squired by a paternalistically gracious knight (Gregory Peck).




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