Shun Li and the Poet

Shun Li and the Poet

Italy, 2011, 100 Minute Running Time
Genre/Subject: Drama
Program: Contemporary World Cinema
Language: Italian

Documentary filmmaker Andrea Segre’s first narrative feature explores the themes of immigration and cultural identity as he follows an unlikely friendship. Shun Li (the delicate Zhao Tao), a Chinese woman working to settle a debt that would enable her young son to join her, works in a textile factory in Rome. She is suddenly transferred to a sleepy fishing village, where she lives in shared housing and tends bar at a café where locals have been regulars for years.

It is there that she meets Bepi (acclaimed Croatian actor Rade Serbedzija), a Slavic fisherman who is something of a poet. Bepi and Shun Li strike up an unusual friendship—they share a common bond of the struggles of immigration despite the fact that their cultures couldn’t be more different. Both find a solace in each other that provides an escape from solitude. Shun Li hails from a long line of fishermen, and Bepi loves that her village holds a poets’ festival. Their relationship remains platonic—before it can be explored further it is stymied by both Shun Li’s Chinese employers and prejudiced locals wary of “intruders.”

In Shun Li and the Poet, Segre employs the lagoon surrounding the town as a slow-moving, melancholic character that bridges China and Italy as a “cradle of identities.” With this backdrop, he explores ideas surrounding individual and cultural identity, and the changes that happen to a rural area when there is an influx of immigration.


Sponsored by:

Click here for Information on Group Rates and Discounts!

DIRECTOR: Andrea Segre
Editor: Sara Zavarise
Screenwriter: Marco Pettenello, Andrea Segre
Cinematographer: Luca Gigazzo
Principal Cast: Zhao Tao, Rade Sherbedgia, Marco Paolini, Roderto Citran, Giuseppe Battiston

You might also enjoy...

  • Chinese Take Away

    Chinese Take Away

    Argentina , 2011 , 93 min. It all starts with a cow falling from the sky. Argentine screen icon Ricardo Darín plays a curmudgeon whose reluctant bond with a stranded Chinese immigrant (Ignacio Huang) helps him warm up to the human race.... more
  • In Another Country

    In Another Country

    South Korea , 2012 , 89 min. Hong Sang-soo’s amusing cross-cultural character study stars Isabelle Huppert, times three, as different French tourists in a triptych of scenarios exploring the ways Koreans interact with visitors and with one another.... more
August 2016
1 2 3 4 5 6
7 8 9 10 11 12 13
14 15 16 17 18 19 20
21 22 23 24 25 26 27
28 29 30 31

Today's Showtimes

Blood Simple
2:00 PM
4:20 PM
Richard Linklater: Dream is Destiny
2:10 PM
4:30 PM
2:20 PM
4:40 PM
7:20 PM
The Lobster
7:00 PM

Hot Tickets

Sign up for our FREE Email Newsletter


CLICK IMAGE for the Member Newsletter

CLICK IMAGE to submit to the Denver Film Festival. 
Withoutabox logos are trademarks of Withoutabox, a DBA of Inc. or its affiliates.

CLICK IMAGE to Renew or Join
Membership Updates and Sign Up

CLICK IMAGE for Information

CLICK IMAGE for more information