On March 10, 2007, Robert Rodriguez presented at the South by Southwest Festival in Austin, Texas, a double feature of two of his, and his fellow director Quentin Tarantino’s, favourite exploitation movies, in order to show to the audience what their upcoming flick, Grindhouse (2007), would be like. Two Italian movies were selected as sources of inspiration for their latest work: Zombie (Zombi 2, Lucio Fulci, 1979), and Torso (I corpi presentano tracce di violenza carnale, Sergio Martino, 1973). Both were well known in their time as Drive-in hits, and both faced several VHS and DVD reissues all around the English-speaking countries, meanwhile remaining quite relatively unknown in their homeland.\ud The aim of our paper is to analyze these two different but exemplar films of Italian exploitation cinema, in order to depict the main characteristics of different Italian subgenres and their influence on contemporary genre cinema. In our analysis, we will focus in particular on the production/distribution of these films, on audience reception and on the stylistic/thematic features which depict the subgenre, in-between consolidated conventions and attempts at innovation
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