Together with Il sorpasso, one of the most incisive films of the commedia all’italiana genre
Some new monsters are hiding behind the apparent frivolity of a seaside holiday
Behind a parade of bathing costumes and the apparent light-hearted tone of the film, L’ombrellone hides a stinging cruelty. Critic Adriano Aprà writes: “In this film what was fascinating has become unpleasant: the cars no longer have competent drivers, the beaches are far too crowded, the beautiful girls are overly provocative or get passed around between suitors who are too old for them, the songs are intrusive and repetitive.” It sounds like Il sorpasso, only worse. Without question, L’ombrellone is one of the most incisive films of the commedia all’italiana genre. The beach as a metaphor for national monstrosity: a madhouse that’s just not fun anymore.
Engineer Marletti manages to visit his wife, who is holidaying at the beach in Riccione, for a few days. He finds her acting somewhat oddly and starts to suspect that she has cheated on him. And while it’s true she has plenty of hopeful suitors, does that mean she has betrayed him?