181. Black Cat, White Cat (1998)

In a much-needed break from Harry Potter films, I discovered a DVD that had been lent to me some months before. To say it’s a world away from boy wizards is an understatement…

On the banks of the Danube, live a family of gypsies, ekeing out a living by small-scale smuggling and general wheeler-dealing. After being double-crossed in a smuggling deal, Matko has to agree to his son Zare being married off to a fellow smuggler’s sister, Afrodita, in order to pay off his debts.

Neither of the youngsters are keen on the idea – Zare is in love with local waitress Ida, and Afrodita is somewhat infamous in the village – she is small in stature, but large in temper, but her brother is determined to have her married off, as he is desperate to get rid of her. In the meantime, old gangster Grga is worried that his incredibly tall grandson will end up alone, and is keen he finds a wife. Years gone by, Grga and Matko’s father were friends, but presume each other has died – which they both appear to do at the start of the wedding! Can it go ahead with two corpses upstairs? Only if Matko hides the bodies, of course…

A brilliant farce, accompanied in nearly every scene with fabulous gypsy music. It’s fast-paced, funny, colourful, quirky and quite madcap.

8/10

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