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Oh! Katharine Hepburn! I mean, I must have seen her in a colour movie before, but it’s… shocking… for her to not be in black and white.

So, this is a David Lean movie? I’m not really a fan of his. I mean, I like his movies, but I don’t really make an effort to watch them, either. So I’m not sure why I got this bluray — it might just be the Hepburn connection.

Is this one of those movies that were financed by the Tourist Board of ? I’ve seen more than a handful of those movies from around this time: Like the Melbourne Chamber of Commerce trying to encourage people to fly down there, so they sent some money to a slightly out-of-work director and/or actor, and then you hope for a huge box office success. (All the movies I’ve seen in that class of films, like the Powell/Pressburger one, have sunk without much of a trace.)


*gasp* LOOK AT THIS:


Hepburn is amazing here. But I can’t imagine that this was a box office smash? It’s too real.


In one scene, the character of Jane Hudson falls into a canal as she steps backwards while photographing Di Rossi’s shop in Campo San Barnaba. Leading lady Katharine Hepburn, concerned about her health, was disinclined to do the stunt herself, but Lean felt it would be obvious if he replaced her with a stunt double. He filled the water with a disinfectant that caused it to foam, which added to Hepburn’s reluctance, then required her to film the scene approximately four times until he was satisfied with the results. To protect her skin, Hepburn was covered with Vaseline. Later that night, Hepburn’s eyes began to itch and water. She was eventually diagnosed with a rare form of conjunctivitis that plagued her for the remainder of her life.

Directors! They’re the worst!

This is a beautiful movie, and Hepburn is fantastic in this. The first half, which is basically just Hepburn, is totally perfect. When we eventually get to the romantic interest, it’s still fine… but not as fascinating.

Summertime. David Lean. 1955.

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