The Israeli series that inspired the 80’s American teen sex comedies
Lemon Popsicle 3 Hot Bubblegum. This is the first one of the Israeli/West German “Lemon Popsicle” series that I have seen, but I am familiar with the seminal 80’s American teen comedy “The Last American Virgin”, which had the same director (Boaz Davidson) and was a virtual re-make of the first film in this series (“Going All the Way”). “The Last American Virgin” also borrows some scenes from this, the third in the series, including the scene where the protagonist “Benji” and his two friends pick up three girls, and while one of his friends gets very lucky with the most attractive one, he is stuck trying to get the bra off the dour, unattractive one. There is also a scene where the same three boys all try to have an ill-fated gang-bang with an older nymphomaniac, but while in “Last American Virgin” it was a Mexican spitfire on the hero’s pizza route, here it is the hero’s sexy blonde cousin(!) visiting from Poland. Most of this movie, however, involves the protagonist being torn between his loyal but virginal girlfriend “Doris” and the “fast” but unfaithful “Niki”, who apparently is the same character that was in the first “Lemon Popsicle” film (and the one played by Diane Franklin in “The Last American Virgin”).
It’s ironic that some Americans regard this as a “rip-off” of “Porky’s”, not only because it obviously preceded “Porky’s”, but also because, if anything, the influence was in the other direction! Not only was “Last American Virgin” an important influence on later teen sex comedies like “Porky’s”, but the Jewish writers, directors, and producers of these American films were clearly aware of this Israeli series, even if the non-Jewish American audience of the the time largely was not. Most 80’s American teen sex comedies actually have a lot more in common with this series than they do with the 70’s American teen sex comedies, including a tendency to be set sometime in the past (usually the 50’s and 60’s) in order to pull a nostalgic and horny adult audience as well as a merely horny teen one, and a soundtrack filled with popular rock songs (I don’t know how they got away with this back then–the music rights alone for a film like this today would be several times the budget).
Like “Last American Virgin” this is both raunchy and ridiculous, on one hand, but also strangely realistic, especially compared to insipid teen fairy tales like “Sixteen Candles” or “The Breakfast Club” (To my mind, it was the late John Hughes who really ruined these films by making them cloying, patronizing, and relatively sex free). This isn’t a great film. The English dubbing is not bad, but dubbing is NEVER an asset, and the jokes tend to miss more than they hit. A lot of the characters are annoying stereotypes (like the horny fat kid), but the lead (Yftach Katzur) is good as are his very Jewish parents. His two girlfriends (Arielle Rabinovich and Oma Dagan) are quite pretty, and his frequently naked female cousin (Sybille Rauch) is very sexy.
If you like 80’s teen comedies, you should definitely check this out, but I would recommend it to anyone regardless,