Film: Casanova

It's the year 1753. Giacomo Casanova is waiting for a promise made by his mother several years ago. Meanwhile, he spends big time in Venice as an infamous lover and seducer for several ladies, something that the Church has not tolerated for a long time. When Casanova is finally apprehended, his friend and protector the Doge has had enough of his cheekiness and gives him one chance for redemption by finding a decent woman and marry. He finds a good chance with the "pure" daughter of Mr. Donato, Victoria, who actually lusts for him every time.

Things do not go well when he meets a beautiful but ahead of her time woman named Francesca Bruni, who despises what Casanova is doing, and begins to slowly fall in love. It happens that she has arranged a marriage with a man she never met, Paprizzio a butter merchant from Genova, and that he thinks she has an affair with a prominent philosopher called Bernardo Guardi. Also, her clumsy brother Giovanni is jealous of him for conquering the heart of Victoria, with whom he had been in love for some time. Casanova unwillingly must impersonate several people, including Paprizzio and Guardi, and use the picaresque in order to get closer to Francesca. Also, the Church has sent a more cruel inquisitor to Venice to stop Casanova's schemes. Hilarity Ensues.

Casanova is another approximation of the Casanova myth, this time in a rom-com style with Heath Ledger playing the titular character and directed in 2005 by Lasse Hallstr÷m of Chocolat fame. It also stars Sienna Miller as Francesca, Charlie Cox as Giovanni, Oliver Platt as Paprizzio, Lena Olin as Ms. Bruni and Jeremy Irons as inquisitor Pucci.

This film also marked the debut of Natalie Dormer (The Tudors, Game of Thrones) and the beginning of her Typecasting as seductress characters.

This film includes examples of:

  • Action Girl: Francesca. Your brother is a poor swordsman who's got himself into a duel? No problem, just take his place and kick ass!
    • Also, Victoria holds her own with a sword in the climax, as well.
  • Age Cut: At the beginning of the movie, with a dissolve from the child Giacomo to the adult Casanova, portrayed by Heath Ledger. The little boy actually looks enough like Ledger to be plausible, which isn't always the case.
  • A Man Is Not a Virgin: Shy, clumsy Giovanni loses his virginity to an entire brothel - for free, because he's apparently just that good - and becomes Badass by the next morning.
  • Arranged Marriage: Francesca to Papprizzio.
    • Also Casanova to Victoria.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: Papprizzio. See Took a Level in Badass.
  • Butt Monkey: Poor Papprizzio. Until the end, anyway.
  • Cannibal Tribe: For failing to punish Casanova for his crimes against the church, Pucci's predecessor and his entire staff get sent off to be missionaries somewhere where there is one.
    Pucci: Let's just say...they have a great hunger for religion.
  • Captain Obvious
    Giovanni: She has a secret lover.
    Casanova: A secret lover? Who?
    Giovanni: ...well, I don't know, it's a secret.
  • The Casanova: Obviously, but with no maliciousness involved.
  • Cat Scare: Mild example. It appears that Victoria is about to be discovered under the table at the Carnivale, but a pig emerges from under the table, instead.
  • City of Canals: The movie takes place in Venice, with people jumping over and even into the canals.
  • Consummate Liar: Casanova. He's engaged to Victoria, he's Salvatto, he's Papprizzio, he's engaged to Francesca, he's Bernardo Guardi, he hasn't seen his fiance anywhere around here, and he's certainly not the owner of this villa.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Casanova is especially good at this, although virtually everyone in the cast takes a turn.
  • Double Entendre: "No intercourse before the intercourse, of course."
  • Ethical Slut: Casanova just appreciates beauty. Really.
  • False Reassurance: Pucci asks Casanova (who is pretending to be Papprizzio) if he'll help him find and hang Casanova.
    Casanova: As sure as my name is Papprizzio.
  • Foreshadowing: Andrea to Francesca, her daughter, about her arranged fiancÚ. "If you don't marry him, then I will."
  • Gorgeous Period Dress
  • Happily Married: Victoria and Giovanni, in a rather odd way that involves both of them having lots of sex with other people.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Casanova. Reciprocated by Francesca.
  • Holier Than Thou: The Inquisitor Pucci, played by Jeremy Irons. Rather than speaking about forgiveness, redemption, or any attempt to save the souls of those ostensibly under his care as a member of the Church, Pucci's goals all seem to revolve around control. There also appears to be an entire order of nuns willing to add another notch to Casanova's bedpost. When admonished for risking (or perhaps earning, in the eyes of the inquisitor), eternal damnation for a single night with Casanova, the response is "seems fair."
  • Ladykiller in Love: The whole plot of the movie.
  • Large Ham: Papprizzio literally, Pucci figuratively.
  • Last Minute Reprieve: Subverted, as it turns out the papal messenger is a fake, and when the authorities find this out, all the main characters are obliged to make a run for it.
  • Lust Object: Casanova to Victoria. And most other women.
  • Masquerade Ball: Most of the cast attends one for Carnivale.
  • Messy Pig: Francesca inadvertently starts a trend for upper-class Venetian ladies to keep pet pigs. (There's no evidence of any of them being particularly messy.)
  • Mistaken Identity: Piled on itself repeatedly, and explicitly named twice.
  • Moustache de Plume: Francesca as Bernardo Guardi.
  • Naughty Nuns: Casanova has had sex with AN ENTIRE NUNNERY.
  • Naughty Under the Table: Implied or at least punned on when Victoria hides under Casanova's table at the ball.
  • Pair the Spares: Taken to extremes - everyone finds a romantic partner by the end of the film, including Giovanni, who also takes on the mantle of Casanova.
  • Parental Abandonment: Casanova's mother leaves him as a child with his grandmother and flees Venice with her lover, promising to come back. He never stops waiting for her. His faith is justified in the end.
  • Pen Name: Bernardo Guardi.
  • Politically Correct History: The movie (set in 18th century Venice) features an emancipated female scientist, who writes books and, as it seems, invented the hot-air balloon. Somewhat justified in that the other characters don't accept her. (Though although the character is fictional, Emilie du Chatelet, Voltaire's mistress, is an example of a real person like this, whose writings included the definitive French translation of Newton's Principia).
  • Royal "We": Casanova uses this in front of Lupo. Subverted in that Lupo uses it back.
  • Sex Face Turn: After Victoria satisfies her raging lady-boner, she decides not to falsely accuse Casanova of rape. Played with; she only loses her virginity because she wants "proof" that she was raped.
  • Sex Is Liberation: Victoria and Giovanni.
  • Skyward Wail: Victoria, upon seeing Casanova with Francesca in the hot air balloon.
  • Snowball Lie: The duel where Casanova pretends to be Salvato to save Lupo from having to fight. He ends up having to pretend to be Salvato for half the movie; this is only the first of SEVERAL personas he has to maintain.
  • Son of a Whore: Casanova. Well, sort of.
  • Straw Prude: Francesca.
  • That Came Out Wrong: Invoked in-universe by Lupo via a comment on being "very well-endowed" (referring to money).
  • Took a Level in Badass: Papprizzio, of all people. After being wrongly racked by Pucci under false accusation of being Casanova, Papprizzio is mutually flirting up a storm with Andrea (Francesca's mother) when Pucci appears. Papprizzio lifts a papal inquisitor bodily off his feet by his collar. This only improves Andrea's opinion of him.
    Papprizzio: Why don't you...stop interfering? All right?