Le calde notti di Don Giovanni [Nights and Loves of Don Juan] (1971) August 22, 2018 08:00
Nights and Loves of Don Juan follows the famed Spanish womanizer Don Giovanni Tenorio (Robert Hoffmann), a fictional character that dates back to Spain around 1630, a wealthy libertine who devoted his life to the sexual conquest of every beautiful woman he crossed paths with. This incarnation of the character is a much more lighthearted representation than some of the earlier writings which were more violent and had strong religious overtones to the character's fate.
For Don Giovanni it doesn't take much to win over a woman's heart, and get her into bed. With some foolish mumbo jumbo about willing to die just for a kiss their clothes simply melt off! Every woman wants to be with him and every man wants to be him, or kill him. His reputation proceeds him and everyone seems to openly be aware of his behavior, yet his status, wealth and the public humiliation of openly admitting your wife cheated on you, have at this point seemingly shielded him from any repercussions. But as the saying goes "hell hath no fury like a woman scorned".
The film opens up with a man wooing a young woman from a windowsill, it's Don Giovanni's right hand man Paco, pretending to be him to butter up the recently returned Concetta from her time at a Catholic boarding school, daughter of local nobleman Consalvo, and step-daughter to Esmeralda (Barbara Bouchet) who just a few rooms over was being seduced by the real Don Giovanni. But his plan to have Paco setup a preceding encounter with Concetta is interrupted when the father bursts in on Concetta's and then on Esmeralda, finding the real Don Giovanni hiding the the closet. He manages to make a quick escape, but when Esmeralda discovers that Don Giovanni was simultaneously trying to bed her young step daughter while making love to her she becomes jealous and vows to go to the King to seek judgement.
The dominoes start to drop for Don Giovanni as Esmeralda feels betrayed that he'd even be interested in her immature step daughter over her, and another socialite Isabella Gonzales (Ira von Fürstenberg) is a little peeved Don Giovanni has never made a move on her. So she publicity acts like he's a scoundrel to get his attention, which it does, but when he learns that she's tricked him he rejects her and calls her the only woman in town to be rejected by him. This makes her furious, and she hires some men to kill him, which leads to a close battle and him waking up wounded in a local monastery.
Waking up to the beautiful face of sister Maddalena (Annabella Incontrera) he instantly begins to try seducing her, which leads to him being kicked out and brought before the King of Seville, were he and Paco are promptly banished to Berber in Algeria. It's here he becomes the special guest of Sultano Selim, a man with a magnificent harem, but with the pulsing desire to acquire one woman who eludes him. The elusive Aiscia (Edwige Fenech) a woman who loves no man and is guarded inside a massive castle. Don Giovanni is automatically intrigued by this challenge and offers to help the Sultan acquire Aisica, when in reality he wants the thrill of being the only man to bed her.
While the mission appears to be no small task Don Giovanni does finally succeed, yet once again finds that success comes with a price, the lengths he had to traverse to seduce Aisica made quite an impression and she falls head over heels in love, demanding he take her with him. Not wanting to get caught and thrown in prison, he reluctantly agrees, but now he's in a sticky situation as Aisica wants a long term commitment, and her powerful father is on their tail, meanwhile back in Berber the Sultan won't be too happy that he's seemingly taken his woman!
Probably the most disappointing part of this film is Barbara Bouchet's role is a lot smaller than one would assume based on the film's advertising material and old magazine articles which seemed to highlight her role in the film. This was likely due to the fact she's the only one to bare all, and it probably filled seats. But unfortunately her character only plays a very minor role in the beginning of the film. On the plus side the film as a whole is still mildly amusing, and while we don't get much Bouchet in the second half we get a decent amount of Fenech, who I honestly didn't know was going to be in this film as she's rarely mentioned in any material I've come across.
As a whole there's nothing great about the film, and essentially over the years it's pretty much been defined by about 45 seconds of Barbara Bouchet completely naked on the bed, which seems to have been most of the film's advertising campaign. There are a lot of other beautiful actresses featured in the film but after a while the plot begins to get predictable and repetitive all the way till the very end. So unless you are a huge Bouchet or Fenech fan there's not a whole lot of interest to be found here. Oddly enough it appears to be a mildly difficult film to find and even more difficult to find a copy with subtitles. In fact we found the film and subtitles separately and it took us months of on and off work to translate and re-time them so we could watch the film and actually understand it. Ultimately if you're simply looking for a Bouchet comedy to watch without the work, check out The Conjugal Debt it's the better Bouchet comedy to watch that actually features her in most of the film, and is a little easier to come by.