Tony Mastroianni Review Collection

Sophia Miraculous in "Miracle"

Cleveland Press November 24, 1967

Too bad that the ads imply that "More Than A Miracle" is some sort of torrid, romantic yarn. What with Sophia Loren and Omar Sharif this is what you might expect.

What it is instead is a fairy tale for grownups and older kids, all about a prince and peasant girl, witches, spells, riddles and even a flying monk.

This abundance of elements also is the film's undoing, for though it has undeniable charm it also meanders about and becomes occasionally pointless.

Anyway, Sharif is a prince with seven princesses waiting for him to choose among them. Only he would rather break in a horse than a wife, so he goes galloping off on his white stallion which throws him and leaves him on foot.

HE IS AIDED at a monastery where there is a monk who flies and gives advice in the form of riddles. And from there the prince makes his way through farm country where he finds his horse in possession of a peasant girl. What a peasant -- she's Miss Loren.

Naturally, they don't hit it off right away. They just hit each other. But uppity as she is, the peasant girl is smitten and seeks the help of the local witch, an old crone who's pretty shrewd but figures this is a job for the regional witches' union which is having a convention in a nearby woods.

WHETHER IT'S a procedural problem or a jurisdictional dispute isn't clear, but the wrong spell is cast. The prince is paralyzed, a condition easily remedied by a kiss from Miss Loren who is then promptly nailed in a barrel.

Still following? A lot more things happen ending with Miss Loren in the palace kitchen, the prince deciding that he doesn't want any one of the magnificent seven but would rather have a peasant.

So there's a dish washing contest to pick the bride but it doesn't end there because there's dirty work in the dishwater and a miracle or two still left.

SHARIF IS a princely prince and Miss Loren proves once more that she looks better in rags than other women do in expensive gowns.

How Miss Loren ever got involved in a lightweight effort such as this is easily explained. It was produced by her husband, Carlo Ponti

Miss Loren is not the only breathtaking sight. The Italian countryside is pretty splendid, too.