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The Black Orchid


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Product Details

  • Actors: Sophia Loren, Anthony Quinn, Peter Mark Richman, Virginia Vincent, Frank Puglia
  • Directors: Martin Ritt
  • Writers: Joseph Stefano
  • Producers: Carlo Ponti, Marcello Girosi
  • Format: Black & White, Dolby, Subtitled, Widescreen, NTSC
  • Language: English, French
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Paramount
  • DVD Release Date: August 31, 2004
  • Run Time: 96 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0002ERWWI
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #321,540 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "The Black Orchid" on IMDb

Special Features

None.

Editorial Reviews

Making artificial flowers as a way of coping with her great loss, Rose’s life changes when she meets widower Frank Valente, played by Academy Award™ winner Anthony Quinn. The two fall in love and decide to get married, but before they can say "I do," Frank must win over Rose’s daughter who does not approve of their union.

Customer Reviews

I loved this movie as a young girl.
Virginia M. Niehoff
I saw this film years ago and loved it ,Sophia Loren and Anthony Quinn were perfect for the parts.
Dianne Venturi-Soop
Although the movie is filled with sad moments, there's still a certain mellowness to it.
Elie Mamieh

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

14 of 15 people found the following review helpful By F. J. Harvey on November 11, 2003
Format: VHS Tape
There is more than a hint of the Oscar winning Marty in this quiet and well obseved drama ,shot in luminous black and white by Roberet Barr and directed with ecconomy and restraint by Martin Ritt.
Anthony Quinn palys a widower who falls in love with Rose Bianco -the Black Orchid of the title.She is a widow whose husband was entangled with the mob and killed in a mob hit.She is eking out a living working in an artificial flower company and worrying about her son who is a persistent escapeee from the county farm.Initially resistant she soon falls heavily for Quinn's rough hewn charms but there is an obstacle -the staunch opposition of his possessive daughter ,played by Ina Balin.
The movie is the story of the courtship and its eventual resolution .
Sterling performances by the leads and a strong musical score by Alessandro Cicognini compensate for the slighly over sentimental script but overall this a neglected little gem
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15 of 17 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on May 4, 1999
Format: VHS Tape
Sophia Loren is a headstrong widow and loving mother with a past. Her deceased husband was involved in the crime world and the neighbors aren't too friendly to her. Her young son is lost without guidance. Anthony Quinn, who portrays a lonely widow, tries hard to convince Loren and his daughter that they could be a happy family. Quinn is great as he desperately tries to reason with people all caught up in the past. There is always hope and love, if you try hard enough seems to be a good message here in this film. Good chemistry between Loren and Quinn.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By E. A Solinas HALL OF FAMETOP 100 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on November 2, 2006
Format: DVD
A pair of Oscar-winning actors, and a comedy about two widowed people finding second love. Not much can go wrong, right? Well, sadly Anthony Quinn and Sophia Loren are the main good things about "The Black Orchid," which desperately tries to cover up its shortness of plot.

Rose (Loren) is a young Italian-American mother, widowed when her husband was killed by mobsters. Since her love of luxury drove him to crime, Rose blames herself, and tries to amend by making artificial flowers to support herself and her young son. She isn't interested in anyone else... until she meets the wealthy, widowed Frank Valente (Quinn).

Rose and Frank soon fall in love and become engaged, and Rose's young son is delighted to find that he will have a father at last. But Frank's daughter Mary (Ina Balin) becomes distraught when she hears the news, and Frank reluctantly breaks up with Rose. Will there be a happy ending for anyone?

"Uninspired" is the best word for "Black Orchid" -- nowhere in the movie does anything really make sense. It's a purely by-the-numbers romance flick, which putters along with little enthusiasm, right up to the predictable conclusion. There isn't even any sense of tension, except for Loren's dramatic way of speaking.

The plot itself unfolds in basic movie fashion, but is way too short. Apparently realizing this, the makers threw in a plot twist -- Mary inflicting her Electra complex on dear Daddykins. It's very contrived, and at times it's almost comical. But of course, expect all twists to be untwisted in a matter of minutes, and with only a few heart-to-heart talks.

The only good things about this tepid film are Quinn and Loren. Loren exudes passionate penitance and love as Rose, who is determined to make things right this time around.
Read more ›
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By nom-de-nick on January 21, 2005
Format: DVD
Quinn's character is likeable and realistic,if a little heavy-handed and rough around the edges, and Sophia is still sexy, despite her lack of variety in clothes and make-up. It's in her eyes. The other performances are, for the most part, all very good, and the story line is enough to hold your interest. Is it ultimately kinda soapy and melodramatic in spots? Yeah, it is. But never enough to ruin it. Just a kinda sappy feel-good flick.
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7 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Elie Mamieh on April 2, 2001
Format: VHS Tape
Many of you might be unfamiliar with this particular movie. But I will say one thing: you are definitely missing a lot if you don't watch this very touchy drama. I don't think they ever showed this movie on AMC but they really should. Although the movie is filled with sad moments, there's still a certain mellowness to it. I have watched this movie 10 years ago and I decided to rewatch it again last week. I almost forgot how delightful it was. Please watch it if you get a chance, and you'll see what I mean.
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By Hippie Heart on September 20, 2008
Format: DVD
This movie is wonderful. It is a drama (with a happy ending) and is a beautiful view of Italians in America. It is watching a real person struggling and trying to overcome all the hardships of life.

Warning! Spoilers!
It is a story of an Italian woman whose husband was murdered by the mafia, and her son who is living in a reform camp. she meets another Italian immigrant, and because of his kindness, begins to change her life. It really is a bittersweet movie, exploring the tragedies of the human life. The strangest part of this movie is adapting to the Italian culture, adding a strong flavor and shifting this movie towards the foreign movie shelf. The actors are wonderfully chose and, most importantly, believable. The shots are simple and the entire movie relies completely on the acting skills of the main characters. I would recommended this movie to everyone, though, be warned, you hit rock bottom before this film re-surfaces.
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