Margot Harrington’s memoir about her discovery in Florence of a priceless masterwork of Renaissance erotica – and the misguided love aff air it inspired – is now, 25 years later, being made into a film. Margot, with the help of her lover, Woody, writes a script that she thinks will validate her life.
Of course, their script is not used, but never mind – happy endings are the best endings for films, as Margot eventually comes to see. At the former convent in Florence where The Sixteen Pleasures – now called The Italian Lover – is being filmed, Margot enters into a drama she never imagined, where her ideas of home, love, art and aging collide with the imperatives of commerce and the unknowability of other cultures and other people.
This being Italy there are affairs, fiery outbursts, and lots of rich food. This bieng Hellenga, the story is just as rich.