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Shun LI And The Poet (2012)


No Score Yet...

Average Rating: N/A
Critic Reviews: 3
Fresh: 3 | Rotten: 0



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Average Rating: 3.7/5
User Ratings: 175

My Rating

Movie Info

Two outsiders become unlikely friends in this drama from filmmaker Andrea Segre. Shun Li (Zhao Tao) is a thirtysomething single mother from China who has come to Italy in the hope of providing a better life for herself and her son. However, Shun Li has partnered with an unscrupulous employment agency that shifts her from job to job and makes it difficult for her to pay her fees so she can make enough money to bring her son to Italy. She works as a barmaid in a shabby waterfront tavern in the



Apr 15, 2013

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All Critics (18) | Top Critics (3) | Fresh (17) | Rotten (1)

Segre's film captures the misty elision of land and sea in the Veneto lagoon and how it perfectly expresses the characters' yearning placelessness.

June 19, 2013 Full Review Source: Time Out
Time Out
Top Critic IconTop Critic

There is not much happiness in the lives of these two people, but they have each other.

November 1, 2012 Full Review Source: Chicago Sun-Times
Chicago Sun-Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

A thin but attractively opalescent immigrant study, prioritizing exquisite, atmospheric detail over the bigger picture.

July 4, 2012 Full Review Source: Variety
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The plot is preposterous, offering up not one, but two, saintly females for our hi falutin' delectation.

June 22, 2013 Full Review Source: This is London
This is London

This is haunting and affecting with visual poetry to spare.

June 22, 2013 Full Review Source: Observer [UK]
Observer [UK]

Shun Li and the Poet actually believes in the inherent decency of strangers. Don't hold that against it.

June 21, 2013 Full Review Source: Irish Times
Irish Times

Francois Couturier's score is overly emphatic in places in tugging at our heartstrings, but the film's gentle humanity is to be cherished.

June 21, 2013 Full Review Source: The List
The List

There is much to savour in this poignant feature by the former documentary-maker Andrea Segre: not least its tough, uncliched view of Venice.

June 20, 2013 Full Review Source: Guardian

Writer-director Segre gives this sensitive story a nicely understated quality that forces us to identify with the central characters in ways that continually catch us off guard.

June 20, 2013 Full Review Source: Shadows on the Wall
Shadows on the Wall

A discreetly epic observation of solitude and circumstance.

June 20, 2013 Full Review Source: Little White Lies
Little White Lies

The film has a shiveringly lovely melancholic spirit that clings to your skin like wet jeans.

June 20, 2013 Full Review Source: Daily Telegraph
Daily Telegraph

Touching story about the tender friendship between a 60-year-old Yugoslav fisherman and an unmarried Chinese woman working in a local bar.

June 19, 2013 Full Review Source: Spirituality and Practice
Spirituality and Practice

Enjoyable and uplifting, Shun Li and the Poet is an engaging and heart-warming study of an unlikely friendship ...

June 19, 2013 Full Review Source: ViewLondon

Shun Li and the Poet is a pensive and slow-burning production that will have you pondering over it for days.

June 19, 2013 Full Review Source: HeyUGuys

A lyrical romance of two lonely souls connecting.

June 17, 2013 Full Review Source: Empire Magazine
Empire Magazine

A film of gentle contrasts rather than tub-thumping extremes, Segre striking a tone as languid as the lagoon where events take place.

June 11, 2013 Full Review Source: Total Film
Total Film

Lyrical, moving saga of a fragile friendship amid cultural alienation and prejudice

September 17, 2012 Full Review Source:

Quietly moving and unassuming

June 9, 2012 Full Review Source:

Audience Reviews for Shun LI And The Poet

What begins as an honest story soon becomes a frustrating experience, unable to generate enough interest due to the lack of chemistry between the two main characters. Besides, it insists on trying to create some visual and narrative poetry where there is none.
June 30, 2012

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Foreign Titles

  • Venezianische Freundschaft (DE)
  • Li and the Poet (Io sono li) (UK)
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