• 2 hr 5 min
  • Drama


A mother who thinks of marriage in terms of business butts heads with a daughter who has her own unusual ideas about love in Lina Wertmuller's screen adaptation of Maria Orsini Natale's historical novel. Francesca (Sophia Loren) was a woman of common birth whose beauty and charm so entranced Prince Giordano Montorsi (Giancarlo Giannini) that he took her hand in marriage in the 1890s. Francesca and the Prince had a baby, Federico, and when the boy became seriously ill, Francesca pledged to the Lord that if her son was spared, she would adopt a needy orphan. Federico recovered, and true to her word, Francesca and the Prince adopted a nine-year-old girl, Nunziata. Years later, Nunziata has grown to become an attractive young woman, and Francesca watches over the Prince's financial affairs, having learned a thing or two about business from helping her father manage his thriving pasta company. Francesca does a fine job of handling the royal accounts, but when one business deal goes spectacularly sour, the Prince decides he should mind the books from now on; he proves to have no skills for the task, and the royal family is soon in dire financial straits. Eager to put the family back on its feet, Francesca begins to broker a marriage between Federico (Raoul Bova) and the daughter of a wealthy shipping tycoon. However, Federico is less than enthusiastic about the idea, largely because he's fallen in love with his adopted sister Nunziata. Francesca is appalled at this and overrules his objections, but after Federico goes to the altar, Nunziata begins arranging a lucrative wedding of her own; Nunziata's plan is to collect a large dowry, and use the money to fund a competing pasta company that will put her mother's firm out of business. Francesca e Nunziata was produced for Italian television, but received theatrical release abroad. ~ Mark Deming, Rovi

Provided by Rovi