British sex comedy  

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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel

British sex comedy films became mainstream with the release in 1976 Carry On England.



The precursor to British sex comedies was Norman Wisdom's last starring role to date, What's Good for the Goose, made in 1969 by Tony Tenser. He specialised in producing exploitation films and founded his own production company Tigon British Film Productions in 1966. In the movie, he leaves his wife and kids to go off on a business trip and has an affair with a young girl played by Sally Geeson

There apparently are two versions of the film, one being an uncensored version (105 minutes versus the cut 98 minute version), which shows nudity from Sally Geeson; this version has never been available commercially.

Percy stars Elke Sommer and Britt Ekland. The film was followed by a sequel, Percy's Progress. The film is about a successful penis transplant. An innocent and shy young man (Bennett), whose penis is mutilated in an accident and has to be amputated, wakes up after an operation to find out that it has been replaced by that of a womanizer, which is very large. The rest of the movie is about its new owner following in his predecessor's footsteps and meeting all the women who are able to recognize it.

To move with the times, the Carry On series added nudity to its saucy seaside postcard innuendo. Series producer Peter Rogers saw the George Segal movie Loving and added his two favourite words to the title, making Carry On Loving the twentieth in the series. Starring "countess of cleavage" Imogen Hassall, the story of a dating agency service is still very innocent stuff. It was followed by Carry On Girls, based around a Miss World-style beauty contest. Next in the series was Carry On Dick, with more risque humour and Sid James and Barbara Windsor's on and off screen lovemaking.

Confessions Of...

Most famous sex comedy movies of the 1970s are Confessions of... starring Robin Askwith such as Confessions of a Window Cleaner. Like the other films in the Confessions series; Confessions of a Driving Instructor, Confessions of a Pop Performer and Confessions from a Holiday Camp it concerns the erotic adventures of Timothy Lea and is based on the novels of Christopher Wood, writing as Timothy Lea.

Soon came Adventures of... directed by Stanley Long including Adventures of A Taxi Driver starring sitcom star Barry Evans. Long began his career as a photographer, before producing striptease shorts or "glamour home movies", as they were sometimes known, for the 8 mm market. Beginning in the late fifties, Long's feature film career would span the entire history of the British sex film, and as such exemplifies its differing trends and attitudes. From coy nudist films (Nudist Memories, 1959), to moralizing documentary (The Wife Swappers, 1969) to a more relaxed attitude to permissive material (Naughty, 1971) to out and out comedies at the end of the 1970s. He did not like sex scenes and was dismissive of pornography, saying it didn't turn him on and turned his back when such scenes were being filmed.

Carry Ons become sexy

British sex comedy films became mainstream with the release in 1976 Carry On England starring Judy Geeson, Patrick Mower and Diane Langton in which an experimental mixed sex anti-aircraft battery in wartime is enjoying making love not war! However, the arrival of the new Captain S. Melly brings an end to their cosy life and causes terror in the ranks...

Carry On Emmanuelle the beautiful Emmannuelle Pervert just cannot get her own husband into bed. A spoof of Emmanuelle, the film revolves around the eponymous heroine (Suzanne Danielle) and her unsuccessful attempts to make love to her husband Emile (Kenneth Williams), a French ambassador. Emile grants Emmanuelle permission to sleep with anyone she likes, and her promiscuity turns her into a celebrity and a frequent talk show guest. Meanwhile, Theodore Valentine is besotted by her and wants them to get married. But Emmanuelle is obsessed with arousing her husband's sexual desire at almost any cost.

Sleaze and Sexploitation

The mid 1970 of British mainstream cinema was a time of sleaze and nihilism.

The redoubtable producer/director Kenneth F. Rowles made a copycat cash in with his The Ups and downs of a handyman His next movie Take an easy ride purports to be a public information film warning of the dangers of hitchhiking but is a grubby and salacious sexploitation film showing young girls being brutally sexually assaulted and murdered. Although Rowles says he had to add those scenes on request of the movie's distributor.

Films like Dreams of thirteen and The Younger the better Geilermanns Töchter - Wenn Mädchen mündig werden and Come play with me playing in Soho and elsewhere with the arrival of the Margaret Thatcher government in 1979 the Eady Levy was abolished killing off the genre.

See also

sex comedy, British exploitation, British erotica, Carry On, erotic cinema
No Sex Please, We're British, Adventures of a Taxi Driver

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