Buona Sera, Mrs Campbell | 1968
On a beautiful European location, a middle-aged woman is unsure which of three men is the father of her daughter. Sound familiar? No, this is 40 years before Mamma Mia!. The twist is that Italian widow Carla Campbell (Gina Lollobrigida) has for years been receiving maintenance from each of them.
Directed and co-written by comedy veteran Melvin Frank, this amiably broad comedy sees Carla’s little scam threatened as the three former GIs arrive in the town of ‘San Forino’ for a reunion.
The fictitious ‘San Forino’ is Ariccia, about 15 mile southeast of Rome. Considered an extension of the city’s southeastern suburbs, the town overlooks the crater of an extinct volcano in the Alban Hills of the Lazio region.
The square in which the American visitors are welcomed is Piazza di Corte, designed by Gian Lorenzo Bernini, who was also responsible for its striking domed Church of the Assunta.
If you’re visiting, don’t forget that Ariccia is famous for its porchetta, pork slowly roasted with garlic, rosemary and wild fennel.