I was lucky to be able to catch Io Sono Li in (what’s left of) our Royal Opera House in Valletta. It was screened as part of the Pjazza Kino Festival last Friday 25th. In the same festival, two other nautical-themed films were shown Kon-Tiki (2012) and The Deep, (2012). The festival was curated by Rebecca Cremona, who also directed and co-wrote Malta’s sea-adventure film, Simshar (you can re-visit our reaction to this film here!)
The strength of Shun Li and the Poet (Io Sono Li) (2011), a France-Italy production, lies in it’s ability to appeal to your softer side. It is a sentimental story of budding love between two very unlikely people, a Yugoslavian fisherman and a Chinese barmaid, in Italy. Both people are united by one factor – neither truly belong in the place they live in.
While it’s disarming humility might be the reason we may not have heard of it before, Shun’s romantic, poetic verses (expressed through the film’s salty, Mediterranean imagery) are what stay with the viewer.
Originally written for Eyeskreen and posted on the 28th of July 2014