Seven Hills Of Rome On a train to Rome, the American singer Marc Revere meets the Italian Raffaela. He notices that she intends to work and live at her uncle’s. When he gives her a ride, it turns out that said uncle has moved to South America. So Revere offers her to live with him at his cousin’s, an impecunious pianist.
Seven Hills Of Rome Mario Lanza is an American singer looking for his fiancé (Peggie Castle) in Rome in “Arrivederci Roma” aka “The Seven Hills of Rome.” The threadbare plot consists of Lanza, as Marc Revere, meeting a destitute young woman, Raffaela (Marisa Allasio) on a train. He takes her to stay with his cousin Pepe. Pepe falls in love with her; she falls in love with Marc.
The plot exists only to take the audience on a dazzling tour of Rome and to have an opportunity to listen to some beautiful music. This was the film that introduced the hit song “Arriverderci Roma.” Lanza also sings “The Seven Hills of Rome,” and part of “M’appari.” Marc blunders into a talent show where his cousin is playing accompaniment and announces he will sing an aria from the opera “Rigoletto” and somehow Pepe knows it’s “Quest o’ quella” instead of the more famous “La Donna e Mobile.” Probably the most entertaining scene is Lanza entertaining some young rock and rollers in Pepe’s courtyard with imitations of Perry Como, Frankie Laine, Dean Martin, and Louis Armstrong.
Having just heard Lanza do some of his best singing in “Because You’re Mine,” the change in the tenor’s voice after six years of drinking was apparent, not to mention that he looked bloated. The voice had darkened; the top was sometimes strained, as well as the approach pushed, and some of the high notes had a covered sound. It’s not unusual for a voice to change in this way – but not at the age of 37. However, he could still pull it out when he needed to, and often does throughout the film.
“Arrivederci Roma” is a pleasant film but heartbreaking to realize that Lanza is almost at the end of his downward spiral and that it would be stopped by his death. He was one of music’s brightest lights.