Italian One Panel Poster
Note: The only version of this film that I have been able to view is in Italian, so my comments are based on that viewing, with only the following synopsis (translated from Italian with googletranslate) as a guide:
"A young architect, Andre [Claude Rich], is hurt when he realizes that his wife, Francesca [Catherine], no longer loves him and wants to be with Ernesto [Lou Castel], his best friend and co-worker. As the two move in together, Andre not only pretends to forgive but insists that Ernesto continue to work with him. Later, reflecting on what has happened, he realizes what went wrong and begins earnestly courting Francesca. While Ernesto is away, he manages to win her back, perhaps forever."
Despite the language barrier, I feel safe in saying that this is what we would refer to today as a "chick flick." If you edited out a few scenes of brief topless nudity, this looks like a film that would have been featured on a 1970 version of the Lifetime channel. The film essentially presents a female fantasy story: Wife leaves her husband for a lover, husband realizes how much he loves her, husband desperately tries to win her back, husband and husband's friend fight for the love of the beautiful woman. This is not my kind of movie, and I doubt my opinion would change significantly with an English-friendly viewing. The males in this movie are presented much differently than the typical male in Italian movies of the 1960's. Those males were often outwitted by their wives/lovers, but they were still macho in the process. The men in this film seem more like the 1970's Alan Alda stereotype.
The film is competently shot in technicolor, has a good 1969-1970 feel to it, and has a decent soundtrack commensurate with the era. Catherine seems to have delivered a good performance, and she never looked more beautiful, with a long, flowing, chestnut-colored mane of hair.
While Catherine seems appropriately cast for the film, I can't say the same for Claude Rich and Lou Castel. I know nothing about their careers (and have not researched them), so I am not opining on their careers or abilities in general, but in this film, they just seem out of place to me. They have a fight scene that would not strike fear in the hearts of many men assessing their fisticuff abilities. I'm sure the budget wouldn't have supported it, but I could see Marcello Mastroianni and Giancarlo Giannini as being much more convincing in these roles (and, I would think, much more appealing to the women for whom this type of story would seem to be geared).
Here are some additional random thoughts:
- Red-haired Italian cult film star Erika Blanc has a supporting role in the film. Not surprisingly, it's a sexy role. She was never shy in that regard.
- The title theme song, So Much Love, was sung in English by Paul Slade. He was a British singer that had a few albums in the 1970's. I wonder if having the main theme song sung in English was considered a positive in trying to market the film outside of Italy. Catherine performed a version of the song that was released in Italy and France, but it was not actually used in the film.
- The character of Francesca has a few scenes of brief topless nudity, but they were performed by a body double, not by Catherine.
Con quale amore, con quanto amore was scheduled to begin filming on September 10, 1969, but it may have been October before filming actually commenced. It was finished in December.
- The August 27, 1969 Variety reported: "On Sept. 10, Clementelli and director Festa Campanile start 'How Much Do You Love Me?' with a cast topped by Catherine Spaak, Claude Rich, and Lou Castel from a screenplay by Ottavio Jemma."
- The October 7, 1969 Variety reported that "Catherine Spaak, Claude Rich, and Lou Castel are filming 'How Much Do I Love You' for producer Silvio Clementelli and director Pasquale Festa Companile."
- The November 6, 1969 Variety reported: "Claude Rich to Italy to star opposite Catherine Spaak and Lou Castel in 'How Much Do You Love Me?'"
- The December 17, 1969 Variety reported: "Now winding his role in the Clesi production 'How Much Do 1 Love You' with Catherine Spaak and Lou Castel, French actor Claude Rich will next..."
- According to the press snipe on the back of this photo of Catherine at the kick-off party for the film, shooting began in October of 1969 (I'm a bit perplexed as to how Catherine managed to go from this hairstyle to the one in the film. The style in the film does not look like a wig to me, so perhaps this picture is a wig.):
The film was released in Italy on January 30, 1970 per IMDB. It later received a limited release in France (1971) and a release in Portugal (1974). I have not seen any information indicating how the film performed. I have seen no indication that it was ever released in any home video format, but it has played on Italian TV through the years.
Here are some Italian posters:
Some stills/publicity photos:
I am not sure about this photo, but it appears to me that it may be an on-set publicity photo/still from this movie:
Here are some records associated with the film, along with sheet music:
An Argentinian poster:
A French poster:
A Turkish poster:
A magazine photo: