Les Amants de Vérone (1949)

Genres - Drama, Romance  |   Release Date - Mar 7, 1949 (USA - Unknown)  |   Run Time - 105 min.  |   Countries - France  |   MPAA Rating - NR
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Synopsis by Hal Erickson

Per its title, Lovers of Verona is an updated adaptation of Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet. The film was a joint project of those felicitous collaborators, screenwriter Jacques Prevert and director Andre Cayatte. The star-crossed lovers are portrayed by Serge Reggiani and Anouk Aimee, cast respectively as the poverty-stricken son of a glassblower and the daughter of a disgraced nobleman. While playing bit roles in a stage production of Romeo and Juliet, Angelo (Reggiani) and Georgia (Aimee) are suddenly promoted to the leading parts. Predictably, hero and heroine begin acting out their characters in real life as well as on stage. Not so predictably, their romance is challenged not by modern-day counterparts to the Montagues and the Capulets, but by the lovers' own heightened sensitivities to their social differences. Following the worldwide success of Lovers of Verona (it was released in Italy in 1949, then internationally in 1951), director Andre Cayatte was given what one historian has described as "carte blanche" in the French film industry; put simply, the man could do no wrong.



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