Now, I love old movies, and I’m willing to suspend my belief pretty far for the sake of a classic movie plot (see my review of Sabrina) but this goes beyond, into the realm of creepy. Yes, part of the problem is that Gary Cooper is playing an international playboy (which, though cast against type, was supposedly closer to who he was in real life) but I didn’t buy it for a minute. He was stiff, wooden and thoroughly unconvincing as a rake, especially a rake who would attract the attentions of a young Hepburn.
None of the trademark wit that characterizes a Billy Wilder production is found here. The only funny bit was a scene where Gary Cooper, embarking on a night of drinking, and a quartet of serenading gypsies (a running gag throughout the film, as they set the mood for each of Cooper’s liaisons) pass a liquor cart back and forth across the length of a hotel suite, all to the strains of a manic gypsy tune. [*1/2 out of 5]