I don't remember this movie well enough to rate it.

Pizza My Heart, on ABC Family
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streaming sites: iTunes

A modern-day remake of Romeo & Juliet, set in Verona, New Jersey. Gina Prestolani (Shiri Appleby) is our new Juliet. She's just returned from college, and she wants to be a photographer. Her father, Lou (Michael Badalucco, whom I knew from The Practice), however, wants her to become a teacher. The Prestolanis, by the way, own a pizzeria, and their pizzas have the best cheese in town. They have a rivalry, going back to the old country, with the Montebellos, who also have a pizzeria. The Montebellos' pizzas have the best sauce in town. (Tell me if this gives you any ideas, hmmm?) Anyway, at the start of the movie, it looks like Gina meets Joe Montebello (our new Romeo) for the first time at the train station, which is confusing, since they grew up right next to each other. But don't worry, it soon enough becomes evident that they have, in fact, known each other their whole lives. Well, Joe is a great chef, and wants to open his own restaurant, but instead he has had to work at the family pizzeria, since his father Vinnie (Dan Hedaya) had a heart attack several years ago (I think), and now can't work so much.

I tried to like, correlate characters in this movie to those in the actual play, but I didn't try too hard. Carlo is obviously the County Paris, though he's a nice guy; he manages the Prestolani pizzeria, he dated Gina in high school, and now he wants to marry her. There's also a priest who tries to get both families to stop fighting each other. Other than that, I couldn't see any other characters reminiscent of the play. Gina has a sister named Annette, who is in love with Carlo. Joe has a friend who runs a restaurant. And there were various other characters in each clan. And some restaurateur businessman named Jean Paul, who wanted to franchise the Montebello pizza into 100 pizzerias. I have no skill at finding a Benvolio, Mercutio, or Tybalt, etc., among any of these people, I'm afraid.

In any event, Gina and Joe fell in love, and their families forbade them to see each other, and Jean Paul had to try to choose between the two families' pizzas (which is important, because both businesses need the money). There were a few decent jokes in the movie. I would say one of the better examples of a certain variety of CIA joke I've ever heard, though I wouldn't want to spoil it for you. And while there might be no apothecary, there is some balsamic vinegar which has rather a, um, less tragic effect than the drug it sort of symbolizes. I guess. Not really sure what else to say about the plot or whatever. I will say that at first, I wasn't too into it, but after awhile I got hooked. You know, enough to finish watching it just this once, anyway.

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