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40 Gradi all'Ombra del Lenzuolo

Sex with a Smile
40 Gradi Sotto il Lenzuolo

Italy 1976
produced by
Luciano Martino for Medusa Produzione
directed by Sergio Martino
starring Barbara Bouchet, Edwige Fenech, Dayle Haddon, Marty Feldman, Alberto Lionello, Aldo Maccione, Tomas Milian, Enrico Montesano, Giovanna Ralli, Sydne Rome, Christian Aligny, Salvatore Baccaro, Fiametta Baralla, Mimmo Craig, Franco Diogene, Nello Pazzafini, Angelo Pellegrino, Renzo Rinaldi, Giuseppe Terranova
story by Tonino Guerra, Giorgio Salvioni, screenplay Tonino Guerra, Giorgio Salvioni, Sergio Martino, music by Guido De Angelis, Maurizio De Angelis

review by
Mike Haberfelner

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5 unconnected stories:

- A man (Enrico Montesano) persuades a woman (Barbara Bouchet) to have sex with him for 20 million Lira. Reluctantly she agrees, ab ove all because he claims he will leave for Australia the very next day and never see her again. A week later the man's back with another 20 million, and before long he has persuaded her to do it again. Days later the woman is at the airport to pcik up her hubby (Franco Diogene) when she meets the man once more, with another 20 million. He claims he will leave the country for good this time and before long he has persuaded her to do it with him yet again on the toilet, in exchange for the money ... Later when the woman actually picks up her hubby, he tells her that the man is acftually his employee who claims he has just gotten 60 million Lira out of Switzerland and transferred it to her account - exactly the amount he has claimed to pay her for their three times having sex ...

- Marina (Dayle Haddon), a millionaire's daughter, is burdened with a bodyguard (Marty Feldman) who has the habit to show up at the least proper moments (like when she's in the bathtub and stuff), thus making her life to a living hell. Eventually Marina finds a lover, artist Francois (Mimmo Craig), and she doesn't mind in the least when he hits her bodyguard over the head with a baseball bat. Even when heimmures the bodyguard in one of his sculptures - he's from Sicily, and there they do things that way -, she is not as worried as she should be ... but then he turns out to be the head of a gang of kidnappers, which is when Marina starts to worry - but her godyguard is not dead as everybody thought, he does make it out of the sculpture in one piece but is covered in quick-drying plaster - which turns out to be an advantage when fighting off a gang of gangsters, and at the end of the day, her own, weird (after all,w e are talking about Marty Feldman here) bodyguard turns out to be Marina's hero of the day.

- A Contessa (Giovanna Ralli) treats her driver (Alberto Lionello) like a piece of shit, but then again, she every now and again treats him to a peak at her lingerie and makes him hotter and hotter - until he can no longer hold onto himself and tries to rape her ... only in the decisive moment being unable to perform .... As it turns out, the two of them are not really Contessa and driver but husband and wife, and they have some problems in, well, the boudoir department, which forces them to more and more bizarre roleplays - but to no avail. It is only when they get into a big fight that he suddenly feels an erection coming on, whereupon they immediately do it - in their car, in the middle of the road.

- A man (Tomas Milian) has increasingly bizarre sexual dreams about a woman (Edwige Fenech), and he has the habit of always phoning her up the next day to tell her about it - much to her annoyance at first, but after a while, she starts to fantasize about him as well, and eventually she persuades hm to meet her under a bridge. Under the bridge, where it's totally dark, she picks the first man she gets her hands on and lets him shag her like nobody's business ... only to learn the next day that it wasn't him she shagged but a complete stranger ...

- A man (Aldo Maccione) sees a woman (Sydne Rome) trying to throw herself off a window ledge and saves her life ... and as a thank you she invites him to her appartment to shag her. What she doesn't mention of course is that she has a jealous dog, who even tends to get violent, and utlimately the man ends up falling from the very widowledge he saved her from ...


In the 1970's in Italy (as well as pretty much around the world), pointless, mindless sex-comedies were produced a dime a dozen, and this is one of them. Now let me mention up front that Sex with a Smile is by no means a great films, but among mindless sex comedies it possibly ranks among the better ones: Each story is at least thought through and most of them feature funny if not terribly original punchlines, and at least veteran comedian Marty Feldman as tough-as-nails bodyguard is worth a chuckle or two. On the debit side of course, much of the slapstick is unbearable (as is often the case with sex-comedies from the 1970's), some of the performances are pretty bad, and from a voyeuristic point of view, many of the stories promise much more than they are able to keep ...

STill, if you have a soft spot for this kind of film (like I do), you might like Sex with a Smile ....


review © by Mike Haberfelner


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Robots and rats,
demons and potholes,
cuddly toys and
shopping mall Santas,
love and death and everything in between,
Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

is all of that.


Tales to Chill
Your Bones to
a collection of short stories and mini-plays
ranging from the horrific to the darkly humourous,
from the post-apocalyptic
to the weirdly romantic,
tales that will give you a chill and maybe a chuckle, all thought up by
the twisted mind of
screenwriter and film reviewer
Michael Haberfelner.


Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

the new anthology by
Michael Haberfelner


Out now from




On the same day
a Burglar wants to kill you
and your Ex wants
to make up ...
... and for the life of it,
you can't decide


A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
Melanie Denholme
directed by
David V.G. Davies
written by
Michael Haberfelner
Ryan Hunter and
Rudy Barrow

out now on DVD