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COVID Bound, time for old Hollywood movies

Roman Holiday, 1953, starring Audrey Hepburn and Gregory Peck

· COVID,Movies

Life seems to be on hold. What else can I do?

The time doesn't seem to be right to discuss real estate with neighborhood residents face-to-face, or with people I happen to meet along my daily travels. People seem afraid to get too close to one another. As it stands, I don't get out much anymore, and it's not easy talking with a mask on. Since California's Gov state of emergency order, I feel like I've entered another reality. I don't know what to do with myself, since I can't wear a mask without having an anxiety breakdown. Subscribing to Netflix and Amazon Prime is probably one of the better uses of monthly subscriptions. Don't need a mask, gloves, and hand sanitizer to stream movies.

Gregory Peck and Audrey Hepburn are shown on a Vespa scooter on the movie poster

Movie poster shows Gregory Peck and Audrey Hepburn riding a Vespa scooter.

photo source: wikipedia

No Spoilers Here.

I would describe the film as a post-WWII, romantic comedy, and travelogue of Rome, Italy. The movie shows everything a couple in love could do in one day while in Rome -- such as scoot around the city square on a Vespa. After the movie was released internationally, the following year Vespa scooter sales rose to 100,000, more than the 60,000 sold in 1950. By 1956 one million scooters had been sold, and by 1960, two million scooters sold. Vespa scooters "had come to symbolize freedom and imagination." Hollywood stars bought Vespas. To this day there are Vespa enthusiasts.(1)

Although the premise for the romance is slightly lame, the movie makes up for it in comedic scenes and dialogue. How can anyone not be disarmed by Gregory Peck's charm, and Audrey Hepburn's stunning beauty. Eddie Albert of Zsa Zsa Gabor, Green Acres tv show fame, plays friend to Peck's character with slapstick flair. Hepburn's first starring role won her an Oscar. She portrays an innocent woman with a good heart, who is also a bit naughty, and who miraculously manages to mature in 24 hours.

I can see why Roman Holiday is well-loved by movie buffs, and ranks high on best movie lists. In film analysis at college, we got to watch clips of the movie, but not the entire movie. That's ok. While I remember the mouth of truth scene for its comedic effect, and not much else, my film studies in toto made me a dead ringer for marriage, and not much else.

It was a treat to watch the movie in its entirety while in COVID lock down, as it can be streamed on Amazon Prime without paying additional rent. If I ever get to Rome, I want to ride a Vespa scooter on the city streets. Do they even have those anymore?

photo source: wikimedia commons

I remember a co-worker in the 1980s who went to Rome on her honeymoon. She had a terrible time, and said she couldn't get back home fast enough. I got the impression men in Rome in the 80s were not the fatherly, protective type, like Giovanni. Although, if I could ride a Vespa in Rome sans mask, and not have to endure TSA body invasion, I would go. Most definitely.

(1) source: wikipedia

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