The Secret Of Santa Vittoria

1969, Movie, M, 134 mins

Review

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An amusing WW II story starring Quinn as a boozy Italian who becomes installed as mayor of his small wine-making village when he erases a Mussolini slogan off a wall upon pronouncement of the death of Il Duce. Despite his new title, Quinn continues his bumbling, drunken ways, much to the dismay of impatient wife Magnani, who throws him out of the house. News arrives that the Nazis are headed for the village to plunder its vast stores of vintage wine. If the Nazis take the wine, the village will starve, as wine is its only source of income. Thinking quickly, Quinn and Magnani devise a scheme for hiding the wine in an old cave on the outskirts of town. The villagers form a line and pass the bottles along it, one by one, from the wine cellars to the cave. They work day and night to stow one million bottles of wine safely away only an hour before the Germans arrive. Quinn has left 300,000 bottles for the Nazis. The Nazi commander, Kruger, suspects that there is a cache of wine somewhere and tries to trick Quinn into revealing the location. After a lengthy battle of wits, however, Kruger gives up and pulls his troops out--but not before Quinn gives him a bottle of wine as a souvenir. Nominated by the Academy for Best Original Score and Best Film Editing. leave a comment

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