To Rome with Love

Film, Comedy
  • 2 out of 5 stars
  • 2 out of 5 stars
(3user reviews)
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To Rome with Love

After turning out his best film in years with ‘Midnight in Paris’, Woody Allen’s creative revival comes to a juddering halt with a foursome of would-be amusing vignettes that barely muster a laugh between them. Rome provides an excuse for Dean Martin’s ‘Volare’ on the soundtrack, as well as an opera-themed sketch (with Woody back in front of the camera playing a retired music-biz exec convinced he’s discovered the new Pavarotti), and the ever-resistible Roberto Benigni mugging away as an average Giuseppe turned into a celeb by the brainless local media. Mostly though, the Eternal City is there for unremarkable tourist-eye footage as background filler.

Almost everything here plays like an early draft a younger Allen would have sharpened up considerably. His own co-starring turn and the Benigni segment are one-joke affairs of thudding obviousness, while elsewhere a farcical misunderstanding between two shy, provincial Italian newlyweds lands Penélope Cruz with a toe-curler of a role as a brassy prostitute who takes a hands-on approach to the plot’s mounting confusion.

Somehow Allen has landed a stellar cast with an average script, and it’s the actors who make this just about tolerable. Jesse Eisenberg does a passable Woody Jr as an architectural student falling for flirtatious neurotic Ellen Page while disregarding the sage advice of Alec Baldwin, a suave scene-stealer as Eisenberg’s imaginary advisor. Yes, there’s the occasional smile to be had, but it’s a long way from Allen’s 1972 effort ‘Play It Again, Sam’. And when a relatively minor Allen film becomes the benchmark, you know you’re sliding down the quality scale.

By: Trevor Johnston


Release details

Rated: 12A
Release date: Friday September 14 2012
Duration: 112 mins

Cast and crew

Director: Woody Allen
Screenwriter: Woody Allen
Cast: Woody Allen
Ellen Page
Jesse Eisenberg
Penélope Cruz
Alec Baldwin

Average User Rating

2.5 / 5

Rating Breakdown

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1 person listening

I didn't like the film, it was a bit slow, confusing, abrupt and no connection. the Alec Baldwin sage shadowing thing was to abrupt and confusing I kept asking myself was he really there? Or are all the characters able to talk to him in this particular scene? I wouldn't recommend this film to anyone unless they want spend the night critiquing the whole thing like me and my friends did. I regret watching this sad excuse for a movie.


Not as polished as Midnight in Paris but still a cozy, fun film for those nights when you don't feel like thinking too much.

john o sullivan

Why bother casting Greta and then underusing her... Cruz is the best part of the film... the rest lets name drop camus,yeats,pound ect ect how witty i am...tripe served up as truffles