Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBBB.
Italy, 1974. Medusa Distribuzione. Screenplay by Lina Wertmuller. Cinematography by Giulio Battiferri, Giuseppe Fornari, Ennio Guarnieri, Stefano Ricciotti. Produced by Romano Cardarelli. Music by Piero Piccioni. Costume Design by Enrico Job. Film Editing by Franco Fraticelli.
Lina Wertmuller’s politically minded romantic comedy fable has all the subtlety of an atom bomb, but it is also intelligently directed and enjoyable to watch. Mariangela Melato plays an impossibly bitchy heiress whose trip aboard a yacht with her friends becomes a nightmare when she and her much-abused servant (Giancarlo Giannini) take a jaunt out on a small boat and end up losing their party. Washed up on a deserted island, they must now play a new game of class warfare when they realize that he is the one who can survive easily on his well-honed skills while she is completely at his mercy. Initially taking a lot of abuse from him as he gets revenge for her evil ways, the two of them eventually discover a deep erotic attraction followed by true love. Are they souls meant to be united forever, or will their relationship change the minute they re-enter the real world, if ever they do? The film was remade three decades later as a box-office fiasco starring Madonna, but this one is definitely the better of the two.