Movies about Gypsies that portray them in a Positive Light
Here are some of our picks for good movies about gypsies in a positive light. If you're looking for gypsy movies, you could do a lot worse than some of the suggestions we make here. And if you have a suggested gypsy movie for us to add to this page, we'd love to hear from you.
Snatch is a Guy Ritchie film with all the non-stop action of Lock, Stock, And Two Smoking Barrels plus Brad Pitt. Pitt plays an Irish Tinker who is the bare fisted boxing champion of his "Piker" clan. The mob kills his mother by burning her alive in her caravan to try to keep him in line. The tinker's revenge is both unexpected and thorough. Snatch is an intricate tale well-woven by Mr. Ritchie and filled with edge of your seat activity throughout. 2001. 90 minutes. Rated R.
The Raggedy Rawney
The Raggedy Rawney is a Bob Hoskins movie from Handmade Films that tells the story of a band of gypsies who adopt an AWOL young soldier and hide him during World War I. I found a copy of The Raggedy Rawney in the used movie bin at Blockbuster, which is usually a good sign.
Lacho Drom may be a documentary about bands of gypsies in Spain, Egypt, Romania and a few other countries. We can't find a copy of Lacho Drom, but the movie was recommended by Keith Haynes and a few other people. Lacho Drom was directed by Tony Gatlif who is himself a Rom (The more accepted international name for ethnic gypsies). Lisa Ekstrom wrote to remind us these two movies are the only ones filmed from a Romani perspective, all the others are from an outsider's view. Good point, Lisa.
Angelo, My Love
Angelo, My Love is the story of a gypsy boy living in the America who has a few problems adapting. Directed by Robert Duval with an amateur cast including members of the Duval family and Angelo Evans as Angelo. Angelo, My Love was recommended by Rebecca Crowley. 1983. Rated R. 113 minutes.
Time of the Gypsies
Time of the Gypsies is a funny story about an awkward kid with telekinetic powers, There are some very strange visuals in this Yugoslavian film. Time of the Gypsies tells the story of this young boy's training as a gypsy, and it might well be an Eastern European "coming of age" movie. He is kidnapped and sent to Italy where he loses his innocence and learns how to fleece the gadza. Good ending and well worth hunting for.'
King of The Gypsies
Correct me if I'm wrong, but I think Eric Roberts stars in King of the Gypsies, a Hollywood version of New York gypsy life. King of the Gypsies provides some humorous insight into some of the more common scams used to raise funds for the tribe. Not as gritty as the two above but certainly more amusing.
Into The West
A terrific Irish movie about a down and out ex-gypsy king and his two rogue sons. The two boys are given a horse by their grandfather, and they insist on keeping him in the bathroom of their third floor apartment. You'll recognize the cast of Into the West--the movie features Gabriel Byrne, Colm Meany and Ellen Barkin. Great stuff and kid friendly. 1993. 97 minutes. Rated PG.
American travelers are thought to descend from their Irish tinker/gypsy counterparts. Traveling rogues who swindle just about anyone, these are modern day gypsies who tar roofs and seal driveways with crankcase oil. This really doesn't do a whole lot for creating a positive gypsy image but, hey it sort of belongs here. Starring Mark (Dirk Diggler) Wahlberg and Bill Paxton, Traveller is a funny story of a cousin's introduction into the clan. Some of the cons are very clever and well worth seeing so you don't become their next victim. Pretty well done and maybe a bit too well researched. Great writing.
Ivan & Abraham
There is very little evidence left of eastern European Jewish Culture from the period between the wars. Director Yolande Zauberman rounded up the talent, money and locations to film Ivan & Abraham. Ivan works for Abraham's family in a Jewish schtetl in Poland. They run away together and link up with a group of gypsies as the boys learn a few things about life outside the ghetto. Ivan & Abraham is in Polish, Yiddish, Russian and Gypsy. 1997. B&W. 105 minutes. Subtitled.
We have not seen these yet but they have been brought to our attention by other gypsiophiles:
Les Princes was recommended by Mike, who assures us it fits well into this category. We'll fill you in when we uncover a copy.
Gadjo Dilo by Tony Gatlif translates into "The Crazy Stranger" in English. Gadjo Dilo has been sent in by a number of people. Mike informs us it is by "the same guy who made Latcho Drom. He is an Algerian gypsy who has begun to make films about his people." Still looking for this one too. Thanks Mike, Rachael, Coxreno, Maddie and Roisin Coyle.
The Romany Trail A British documentary brought to our attention by Katraina Z. Rom Katriana tells us this is a documentary about Greek gypsies. Anyone know where it might be available?
Alex and the Gypsy /Love and Other Crimes - Kim Danbert tells us, "ack Lemmon is a bail bondsman in love with a gypsy portrayed by Genevieve Bujold. Hopelessly in love and betrayed by her, Lemmon reluctantly bails her out of jail and tries to keep up with her until her court appearance. James Woods plays Jack's assistant. Let us know if you locate a copy.
Black Cat, White Cat - A new film by Emir Kustrica, who also gave us Time of the Gypsies. It is still playing in art cinemas but should be out on tape/DVD soon.
Curse on the Gypsies is a lengthy documentary done by the History Channel and is apparently available on video. Again, thanks KZ.
We also recommend the book Bury Me Standing by Isabel Fonseca for a view of current hardships for Roma in eastern Europe.
Weird Movies Home