(1) The film that is the subject of my analysis, Sanky Panky 1, clearly belongs to this comedic current.
Sanky Panky 1 tells the story of Genaro, a not particularly handsome Dominican mulatto.
Sanky Panky 1 was a success in the island's cinemas, with attendance figures over 800,000.
Before explaining my argument, I will give a brief contextualization of the very Dominican term "sanky panky." (3) This is a corruption of the English phrase hanky panky, a somewhat antiquated term for illicit sexual relations.
The figure of the sanky panky, which is not necessarily seen negatively in the Dominican Republic, has been studied in depth by anthropologists and sociologists (Padilla Caribbean Pleasure Industry, Cabezas, Kempadoo), whereas its artistic re-creations are more rare.
The following characterizations made by Marsh with regard to this genre apply perfectly to Sanky Panky 1: "Film comedy has from its beginnings been marked by a particular physicality; by exacerbated, hyperbolic gesture; by the grotesque" (194).
The second element that occupies a key position in the dichotomous view is the resort, a place where many sanky panky operate.
At first sight and at many points, Sanky Panky 1 confirms all these dichotomies.
A Spanish version of "Sanky Panky" plays during the opening and closing credits.
Around the middle of the film, an English version of "Sanky Panky" is brought in.
This is the case, for example, with "Obsesion": "It's five in the morning and I haven't slept at all / Thinking about your beauty / I'm going to become crazy / Insomnia is my punishment, / Your love will be my relief / And until you're mine / I won't live in peace." In relation to the sanky panky, one might think that power relations are subverted because the man submits to the woman.
As already mentioned, the English variant of "Sanky Panky" is inserted as a performance by the three gringas in the middle of the film, with the Spanish version opening and closing it.