Brass on Fire | Chicago Reader

Brass on Fire

Although it comes off a bit like an infomercial, this 2002 documentary by Ralf Marschalleck about Fanfare Ciocarlia, a dazzling Gypsy brass band from a remote village in the Romanian province of Moldavia, entertains thanks to the vitality of the music. The film portrays the German record producer who initially sought the group out as something of a hero along the lines of Ry Cooder, who played a similar role with the Buena Vista Social Club, but Fanfare Ciocarlia itself easily steals the show. And while the director doesn't do much to illuminate the genesis of the Gypsy brass band, some of which are wildly popular in eastern Europe, luckily the wildly polyphonic sounds speak for themselves. 103 min.


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