Matko is a small time hustler, living by the river Danube with his 17 year old son Zare. After a failed business deal he owes money to the much more successful gangster Dadan. Dadan has a ... See full summary »
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Matko is a small time hustler, living by the river Danube with his 17 year old son Zare. After a failed business deal he owes money to the much more successful gangster Dadan. Dadan has a sister, Afrodita, that he desperately wants to see get married so they strike a deal: Zare is to marry her. But none of the two care much for an arranged marriage: Zare is in love with Ida, Afrodita is waiting for the man of her dreams. Written by
Emir Kusturica's films all pulsate wildly to the wonderful sounds of authentic gypsy music. Guitars, fiddles, accordians and all manor of horns are as much a part of their lives as eating and sleeping.
Song and dance feature heavily in "Black Cat, White Cat," Kustruica's finest and most complete film to date. The music isn't really a soundtrack, but is largely, physically written into each scene (performed with gusto by musicians who often follow the characters around). Indeed, the 'bad-guy' character of Dadan scarcely has a scene where he isn't swinging or dancing along to something (even a bizarre pop/rock song makes a comic cameo). But the other characters have their musical moments as well.
"Black Cat, White Cat" has a large cast and a sprawling storyline, largely resolving around two gangsters - Dadan and the hapless Marko - and their attempts to outwit each other. Things come to a head when Dadan tries to force Marko's son to marry his spinster sister as a repayment for one of his father's debts.
But the plot is largely unimportant in a film of this type. The viewer is simply swept away in a good natured deluge of funny lines, inventive slap-stick, unusual settings and colourful supporting characters (a particular favourite: the old man who continually re-watches the last two minutes of "Casablanca"). All you need to do is sit back and enjoy. Oh...and listen to the music.
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