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A young lady who, within minutes of meeting someone for the first time, thinks nothing of telling in great detail about her one major lesbian relationship while insisting she likes men better, Monica is ill-advisedly thrown together by Sally with Jack, who quickly becomes smitten. Foolishly catering to Monica’s every whim, Jack suddenly finds the older but wiser John hovering alongside him, but invisible to anyone else, acting as a sardonic mentor and ever-ready to comment upon Jack’s amorous follies. Baldwin is well suited to this sardonic role but, unfortunately, Allen long ago wrote this routine a hundred times better when he used Humphrey Bogart as his own romantic mentor in Play It Again, Sam.

John’s sage insights notwithstanding, Jack allows Monica to wrap him around her little finger in a storyline that at least has a bit more going for it than the others and, with further elaboration, could have filled out a film of its own. Secondhand goods that it is, this playlet is still preferable to the others, which are all one-joke affairs.

The awe-inspiring opera singer Jerry overhears in the shower just happens to be the father of his future son-in-law. After strenuous protests, mortician Giancarlo (real-life tenor Fabio Armiliato) finally agrees to a tryout, which flops. Why? Because he can only sing beautifully in the shower. Jerry’s solution? Stage a Pagliacci in which the lead character is always taking a shower, which results in an elaborate production in which a nude Giancarlo, his midsection artfully covered by opaque glass, can sing all his songs while scrubbing away. However bad this sounds, it’s funnier read than experienced.

Another strand focuses on a nondescript fellow (Roberto Benigni) who inexplicably finds himself hounded 24 hours per day by journalists, TV reporters and photographers who ask him in breathless tones about what he had for breakfast and all manner of other quotidian inanities. Eventually, when he finally asks why he’s being besieged, someone points out, “You’re famous for being famous.” This is Allen’s comment on the annoying side of being a celebrity, but it plays like a faint echo of Stardust Memories.

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The most strained and just plain silly thread charts the implausible romantic distractions experienced by provincial newlyweds when they become separated for the longest day since the Normandy invasion. When sweet, innocent-seeming Milly (quite cute Alessandra Mastronardi) heads off from their hotel in search of a hair salon, her “middle-class mouse” husband Antonio (Alessandro Tiberi) is immediately assaulted by knockout hooker Anna (Penelope Cruz), who mistakes him for the customer to whom she’s been well paid in advance to give the royal treatment