That’s Amore

26 Mar

That’s amore
March 26, 2010

When you stop to think about it, it only makes sense that Rome is one of the most romantic cities in the world.

Hello? Rome-ance?

Hollywood film-makers have often taken advantage of the city’s exotic appeal, most recently in the new rom-com When In Rome, which opens today.

The story of an American girl (Kristen Bell) who flies to the Italian capital to attend her sister’s wedding, only to fall in love herself, When In Rome uses The Eternal City as a fairytale backdrop for ‘lurv’.

From the beloved Roman Holiday to the somewhat less beloved The Lizzie McGuire Movie, Rome has worked its magic on one bedazzled couple after another.

But what is it about Rome exactly that gets the amorous juices flowing?

JASON JOHNSON, henceforth known as Antonio Lombardi, invites you to hop on his Vespa to find out.


Did you know that one of Rome’s nicknames is The City Of Fountains?

True, in Singapore we have the Ngee Ann City fountain, but it’s not often that you see beautiful women wading in it.

The story of When In Rome actually centres on a fountain known as the Fontana D’Amore (fountain of love). Legend has it that if a woman takes a coin from the fountain, whoever threw in the coin will fall in love with her.

So when Bell’s character picks up five coins, she ends up with four wacky stalkers and one very handsome suitor played by Josh Duhamel.

Let’s not forget that one of the most iconic scenes in cinema history has the stunning Anita Ekberg frolicking in the Trevi Fountain in La Dolce Vita (1960).


Rome is one of the most stylish cities in the world, with a thriving fashion industry that is second to none.

In the recent musical Nine, Daniel Day-Lewis plays a director who hops from bed to bed to bed looking for inspiration… among other things.

Why do the women love him so? Because he’s a sharp dresser. Perhaps also because he’s rich and powerful. You never know.

Anyway, with everyone looking so good, it is inevitable that love will bloom.

For a taste of classic Italian style, best check out the classic Italian films of real Italian directors such as Visconti, Bertolucci and Fellini.


What better way to get close to someone than to LITERALLY get close to them, preferably by having them share a teeny-tiny scooter seat with you.

These Italian guys, I tell you, they know what they’re doing.

In The Lizzie McGuire Movie (2003), Hilary Duff was a goner when she hopped on the back of that dreamy Italian kid’s Vespa.

You knew exactly what her grudgingly platonic buddy Gordo was thinking: ‘No! Not the Vespa!’ Poor nerd.

The Vespa scene in Roman Holiday (1953), with Audrey Hepburn and Gregory Peck, is perhaps a little more unforgettable.


Rome is one of the most ancient cities on the planet, and nothing makes for a more romantic backdrop than a lot of exquisitely evocative old buildings.

Where would you rather woo and be wooed? A strip mall or the Colosseum?

In Jumper (2008), Hayden Christensen takes Rachel Bilson on a private tour of that ancient wonder and, of course, she’s rightly impressed. Way to go, Anakin!

Even a direct-to-DVD movie from the Olsen twins like When In Rome – yes, it has the same name as the new Kristen Bell flick – benefits from the lush settings of the Italian capital.

Don’t even get us started on all those movies that are actually set in Rome’s glorious past, such as Quo Vadis (1951). Togas are sexy. They just are.


The Italians are known for being a passionate people and Italian Spiderman is a perfect example.

With a taste for macchiato, panini and water pipes, this Internet sensation whose hilarious parody of rip-off superhero flicks can be seen on YouTube, has a true lust for life.

Whether battling the evil Captain Maximum or charming the women with his mad guitar skills, Italian Spiderman is sex on wheels – like a Ferrari, but fatter, and with a pornstache.

He’s not really Italian, and he’s not really Spider-Man, but in a perfect world, he would be.

Pure-blooded Italian actors such as Monica Bellucci, Marcello Mastroianni and Sophia Loren aren’t so bad either.


The NewPaper

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