Roman Holiday (’53)

Got to revisit Roman Holiday tonight.  I was going to write a review, but this guy’s is better.

I will say that Wyler’s direction of the two leads was wonderful.  I am curious how old Audrey Hepburn was playing in the screenplay because I didn’t buy her performance at first, but then she blew me away with the ending.  The wordless expression on her face was truly remarkable.  Can’t believe it’s taken me this long to watch this movie.

I am glad Dalton Trumbo finally received his credit posthumously.  The Hollywood Blacklist unfortunately kept Trumbo out of the accolades for this film and Ian McLellan Hunter recieved the Oscar and credit that year.  (there were two best screenplay Oscars for 1953 as a result of Hunter’s son not willing to give up the Oscar years after the fact.)   At any rate, no American could have filmed Italy the way a native like Fellini could, (La Dolce Vita was made 7 years after this film) but nevertheless the magic is there.  I think the subtlety saved this movie.  There is a rare video below of her accepting the Oscar for this role.  Among many great actresses, she beat out Ava Garnder in Mogambo and Maggie MacNamara in The Moon is Blue (a film I show in my class every other semester).  The rumor was that Hepburn planted a kiss on the Oscar presenter in nervousness but maybe it happened off camera because it isn’t here.


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