Synopsis by Hal Erickson
The Affairs of Cellini is based on Edwin Justus Mayer's popular stage play The Firebrand, which in turn was based on the life and times of Renaissance artist/political reactionary Benvenuto Cellini. Fredric March plays the tempestuous, amorous Cellini, who spends as much time in swordplay with jealous husbands as he does in his artist's loft. When the duke of Florence (Frank Morgan) falls for Cellini's beautiful model (Fay Wray), Cellini is presented in court, whereupon he revives an ongoing affair with the duchess of Florence (Constance Bennett). Though a bumbling buffoon, the duke nonetheless holds the power of life and death over everyone in his domain, including Cellini. Thanks to his political activities and his overactive libido, Cellini is nearly executed, but a series of farce-like complications allows the plotline to turn out to the artist's advantage. Though hardly reliable as history, The Affairs of Cellini scores on its comic content, including the hilarious performances of Frank Morgan as the cuckolded duke and Fay Wray as the monumentally stupid artist's model.
activism, politician, aristocracy, artist, bachelor, bumbler, clown, complications, conflict, court [law], duel, enemy, escape, extramarital-affair, libido, love, modeling, prince, renaissance, torture