Commedia sexy all'italiana
Commedia sexy is characterized typically by abundant female nudity, and by the minimal weight given to social criticism that was instead basic in the commedia all'italiana main genre and stories are often set in affluent environments such as wealthy households. The genre has been described as a cross between bawdy comedy and humorous erotic film with ample slapstick elements and follows more or less clichéd storylines.
There are generally referred to as progenitors of this genre the "mondo films" genre, which shifted the limits of what could be shown in Italian cinema, a series of comedies (such as Pietro Germi's Signore & Signori and Dino Risi's Vedo nudo) that focused on Italian hypocrisy about sexual taboos, and above all the Pier Paolo Pasolini's "trilogy of life" (The Decameron (1971), Canterbury Tales (1972) and Arabian Nights (1974)), that generated a number of not-official sequels and spoofs that became collectively known as Decamerotici.
The commedia sexy was very successful commercially between the 1970s and early 1980s, although it was generally panned by critics (with a few exceptions such as several comedies starring Lando Buzzanca), and then declined when female nudity became common in Italian mainstream cinema, television and magazines and when pornographic films became more widely available.
The commedia sexy launched the career of several actresses, including Edwige Fenech, commonly considered the star of the genre and also Gloria Guida, the staple lead actress of coming-of-age films and popular La liceale series in the mid-1970s and Nadia Cassini who was publicised as an heiress to Fenech in the late 1970s. Many actresses who had earlier success in other genres were seen passing to commedia sexy and becoming well-known exponents, such as Barbara Bouchet in the late 1970s and Carmen Russo in the early 1980s, a period when the genre was starting to fade in popularity. The genre is also effectively identified with prominent male comedians including Lino Banfi, Pippo Franco, Alvaro Vitali and Renzo Montagnani.
- Michele Giordano, Daniele Aramu, La commedia erotica italiana, Gremese Editore, 2000. ISBN 888440035X.
- Max Serio, Commedia sexy all'italiana, Mediane, 2007. ISBN 978-8896042113.
- Marco Bertolino, Ettore Ridola, Vizietti all'italiana: l'epoca d'oro della commedia sexy, I. Molino, 1999
- Gordiano Lupi, Le dive nude, Profondo rosso, 2006
- Gordiano Lupi, Grazie... zie! Tutto sulle attrici e i registi della commedia sexy all'italiana, Profondo rosso, 2012.ISBN 8895294521.
- Andrea Di Quarto, Michele Giordano, Moana e le altre, Gremese Editore, 1997
- Stefano Loparco, Il corpo dei Settanta. Il corpo, l'immagine e la maschera di Edwige Fenech, Il Foglio Letterario, 2009. ISBN 978-8876062582.
- Giuliano Pavone, Giovannona Coscialunga a Cannes: storia e riabilitazione della commedia all'italiana anni '70, Tarab, 1999