ROMAN HOLIDAY & SUMMERTIME
Monday, December 11
Directed by William Wyler
Starring Audrey Hepburn and Gregory Peck
(1953) Central European princess Audrey Hepburn (Best Actress Oscar for her first major role) skips out on her official schedule to enjoy Rome incognito, with opportunistic reporter Gregory Peck in tow. 35mm. Approx.119 min.
“No one could have brought out Hepburn’s magic as winningly as Wyler.”
– Pauline Kael
“William Wyler’s 1953 reverse-Cinderella story spends as much time exploring a European wonderland as it spends advancing its plot, though in Wyler’s case, the story is in the exploring… Wyler, working from a script by blacklistee Dalton Trumbo, lets much of the film pass without dialogue, allowing Hepburn’s immediate reactions (as enchantingly passionate now as they were 50 years ago, in what was her Hollywood debut) and her increasing physical closeness to Peck say what the characters can’t. The leisurely pace also allows for plenty of touristy gawking at the sights of Rome, and for viewers to project themselves into the sidewalk cafs, gelato stands, and crumbling ruins.”
– Noel Murray, A.V. Club
Directed by David Lean
Starring Katharine Hepburn and Rossano Brazzi
(1955) Europe at last, as Katharine Hepburn’s spinsterish Akron secretary reaches Venice – and, after a canal dunking, romance with married Rossano Brazzi. Oscar nominations for Actress and Director, plus New York Critics’ Award to Lean. 35mm. Approx. 99 min.
“Few actresses in films could equal Hepburn’s evocation of aching loneliness on her first night in Venice.”
“Hepburn rarely played a woman with a child; she was almost invariably the modern woman, the career girl, the bachelor girl. By 1955, in Summertime, she was at the end point of that tradition — as the aging virgin, an innocent abroad in corrupt, sensual Venice. Prim and gaunt, withering in her loneliness, she is the female Yankee, the archetype of a Henry James heroine grown old.”
– Pauline Kael