Shanghai Gypsy (Sanghaj)

The feature film Shanghai was made by the creators of the acclaimed Rooster’s Breakfast. The director Marko Naberšnik decided, as he had done before, to adapt one of the writer Feri Lainšček’s novels. The story of the novel The Untouchables, which was written for ‘Myths,’ a prestigious international literary project, is a story about the Roma population of the Prekmurje region. It centers around a narration by Lutvij Mirga Belmold or Shankaj Gavu, as he has also been known to about four generations of the Balkan Roma. The novel tells the story of Jorga Mirga, who made a living by making grindstones, of Ujaš Mirga, who smuggled illegal goods from Trst, and that of a son, Don Belmold Mirga, who turned to drugs. The story itself serves as an attempt on the part of the reader to understand the situation of the Roma community and their “original sin,” while the second part goes past the myth and delves into trivial and cruel reality of the life the European Roma are forced to lead. The public premiere of this long awaited film took place in Maribor.

The Story 
The main protagonists of the film are members of the gypsy family Mirga. Lutvija Belmondo Mirga narrates a story about four generations. Belmondo is the central character of the film, a gypsy king, who decided to establish his own gypsy village. He names it Shanghai. Belmondo makes a living smuggling and his power and influence grow big. He even gets the local police and politics on his side and that helps him to become untouchable for law. But with the downfall of Yugoslavia, smuggling of goods is replaced by smuggling of the arms. Though lucrative the business starts to threaten Belmondo’s personal life and he finds himself at the crossroads. Will he protect his own family or is he going to sacrifice his personal happiness for business ambitions?

Shanghai Gypsy is a story about eternal longing for happiness; it is a story about love and family ties, in which tears are intertwined with laughs. The story is set in times of the downfall of Yugoslavia. The film is shot in the authentic Romani language.

Screening: Tuesday 2 October 20:00

Runtime: 124 mins


Apollo Cinema Piccadilly Circus
19 Lower Regent Street

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