A haunting film about an unhappy young woman transported to the outskirts of Venice by her Chinese gang masters, this contemporary snapshot of Italy is a slice-of-life reflection on the meeting of two cult
Chinese illegal immigrant Shun Li works in a textile factory in the suburbs of Rome in order to secure her papers and enable her eight-year-old son to come to Italy. She then moves to a small city-island in the Venetian lagoon, to work as a waitress in a pub. An old Slavic fisherman named Bepi, nicknamed “the Poet”, has been a regular at the pub for years. He desperately grapples with the economic and social changes the region is going through. Soon, a friendship develops between Shun Li and Bepi which helps them both cope with their various struggles. However, their relationship ends up upsetting both the Chinese and local communities.
An unusual and compelling first feature deservedly selected for the Director’s Fortnight section of the Venice Film Festival, Shun Li and The Poet has a terrific central performance by Zhao Tao, Jia Zhang-ke’s muse in films like Platform and The World. The film takes the essence of an all-too-real situation (the recent influx of Chinese immigrants into the environs of Venice) that is also simultaneously a new
look at aspects of Venetian life, refreshingly naturalistic and free of picture postcard tourism.
Other films in Cork Cine Club’s current season are Short Term 12 (USA 2013) on 6 February; Gloria (Chile 2012) on 13 February; Wadjda (Saudi Arabia 2012) on 27 February; Out In The Dark (Israel 2012) on 6 March; The Act of Killing (documentary – Indonesia/UK 2012) on 13 March; Night of Silence (Turkey 2012) on 20 March; In The Name Of (Poland 2013) on 27 March; and The Broken Circle Breakdown (Belgium/Netherlands 2012) on 3 April.
Cine Club membership is included in the ticket price of €8.50/€7. Trailers and reviews can be found on www.corkcineclub.com, Facebook, Twitter and Youtube. Tickets are sold at the door. Foreign language films are subtitled.
Cork Cine Club is a volunteer-run organisation whose mission is to give local audiences the chance to see a range of world cinema not usually available on commercial cinema screens. Since its founding in 2010, the Cine Club has offered more than 90 of the best in independent films to Cork cinephiles.
Cork Cine Club is supported by access>CINEMA, a resource organization for regional cultural cinema, and by The Arts Council of Ireland.