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Author Topic: Il Sistema Fenech (Andrea Pergolari)  (Read 9541 times)


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Il Sistema Fenech (Andrea Pergolari)
« on: 13 Jun 2009 - 13:07 »

This is a quick review of Andrea Pergolari's book: Il Sistema Fenech (published by unmondoaparte).

I was interested in this book because Edwige Fenech is such a key figure of Italian popular cinema of the 70ies. She's the most memorable Giallo scream-queen and the undisputed erotic comedy super star. I thought I would learn more about here, the movies she made and the golden age of "euro-trash".

Unfortunately this book is a disappointment. Talking about "book" is in fact misleading. It's more a compilation of information that could serve as an early draft for a book, than a true book. Andrea Pergolari was really lazy, he didn't write more than 20 original pages. The rest is derivative information (mostly excerpt from newspapers!).

In the 200 pages, there's only a few lines of biographical elements in the introduction. Wikipedia.org has more than this.

The interview section is only 15 pages long. We get 3 short interviews of Luciana Martino (producer of 25 movies with Edwige), Mariano Laurenti (director of Satiricosissimo, L'Insegnante Va In Collegio,... ) and Franco Verucci (writter of Corneti Alla Crema,...). Strangely, we don't get an interview of the lady herself or any of her co-actors.

Then we get a few pages with articles published during Edwige's career, mostly in La Repubblica). Nothing really interesting here...

The main part of the book is the Filmography. 130 pages covering all her movies, including TV productions. For each movie we get a complete cast, a short synopsis, Italian box office scores and a few reviews. The reviews are quotes from magazines, books or film dictionaries (Corriere Della Serra, Morandini Dizionario dei film, Il Tempo,...) . They are rarely longer than 10 lines. It's really frustrating. We learn absolutely nothing about these movies. The only element I found valuable was the box-office scores. As expected the erotic comedies are on top, going often above one billion lira. L'insegnante for example, reached 2.2 billion lira. The thrillers weren't as successful. Tutti I Colori Del Buio made less than 300 million, Nude Per L'Assassino a bit more, and Deodato's Un Delitto Poco Commune was a disaster, with only 30 million.

After this extensive Filmography, we get a short "Personnagi" section. A dictionary of people who worked with Edwige, with short bios: Sergio Martino, George Hilton, Lino Banfi, Giuliano Carnimeo, etc...  Unfortunately , it's incomplete. Ivan Rassimov and Massimo Dallamano, to name just two, are missing.

Overall this is a boring and dispensable book, bits and pieces brought together without any ambition or inspiration. I read it in 15 minutes. I'm wondering why it was even published. It never answers the relevant questions: Where does Edwige come from? How did she started? How did she get noticed? Why did she play exclusively in erotic thrillers and comedies? How was the atmosphere on the sets? Were the nude and violent scenes easy to shot? Did she enjoyed these movies? What was it like to be a sex icon?  etc...

The fact that Luciano Martino - her pygmalion, the man who "created" her - is mentioned only briefly shows how inadequate this book is.

Skip it!


  • Guest
Re: Il Sistema Fenech (Andrea Pergolari)
« Reply #1 on: 13 Jun 2009 - 15:57 »

Thanks for the review Zarith,sounds like pure exploitation...


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Re: Il Sistema Fenech (Andrea Pergolari)
« Reply #2 on: 13 Jun 2009 - 16:01 »

Skip it!
Thanks for the heads up. I was going to buy this at some point too.


  • Guest
Re: Il Sistema Fenech (Andrea Pergolari)
« Reply #3 on: 07 Dec 2009 - 08:28 »

For DIEHARD Fenech fans, it's still a must have.  I've cross referenced this book many times tracking down specifics in films like Sono Fotogenico, etc.  Like the comments above though, I only recommend this book for reference, not a 'complete' Fenech tribute work.

Gary B.

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Re: Il Sistema Fenech (Andrea Pergolari)
« Reply #4 on: 09 Dec 2009 - 03:18 »

Always wondered about this one. I have the 'monnezza'/Tomas Milian book from the same company and enjoyed it very much.  A good read for those willing to translate tirelessly  :)
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