Cobra Gypsies

2015 ,    »  -   24 Comments
673
8.95
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Ratings: 8.95/10 from 195 users.
Storyline
Cobra Gypsies

Filmmaker Raphael Treza traveled to northern India and lived among an ancient tribe known as the Kalbeliya for three months. Cobra Gypsies is the vibrant and enlightening document of that journey. The Kalbeliyas are a highly spirited people; ebullient in their celebration of life and colorful custom. Although many of them have never before met a foreigner prior to Treza's arrival at their camps, the tribes-people seem unguarded in their enthusiasms to share their culture.

The tribe is shown in comfort with the oftentimes inhospitable environment which surrounds them. In the midst of bee swarms and venomous lizards, they search for one of the most dominant symbols of their tribe - the cobra. In one particularly illuminating segment of the film, Treza is taken on an excursion to hunt the cobras, which are widespread inhabitants of the region. Once the cobras are caught, they are largely depleted of their deadly venom. Sometimes they are placed on public display for money. Gypsies also learn to handle the reptiles from an early age, and incorporate them into their ceremonial dances.

Music plays an integral role in defining the culture of the Kalbeliyas as well. Treza's camera captures the festivities at an annual two-day music festival, during which hundreds of families celebrate the name of Krishna through uninhibited dance from nightfall to sunrise. Vivid and pulsating beats permeate the entirety of the film, and help to characterize the thriving spirit of the community it documents. The camps are scored by the buoyant sounds of perpetual song.

Marriages are arranged from an early age, and the couple remains bonded until death. We observe the ritualistic beauty of a Kalbeliyas wedding, where the groom is covered in the eye-popping primary colors of plants and spices, guests descend upon the bride's house led by a mobile disc jockey, and dancing proceeds well into the night.

Cobra Gypsies allows viewers an opportunity to witness behaviors and customs that have never before been captured on camera. The filmmaker's point of view is unobtrusive, and we benefit from the sense of having lived in the presence of the Kalbeliyas for a brief, but glorious period of time.

24 Comments / User Reviews

  1. Jenika

    I have always felt an affinity with the Gypsies and was sad that they were not remembered when Hitler slaughtered so many of this special traveling band/s.

  2. sathish kumar

    i like this documentary very much,

  3. hakan kaplan

    awesome ....

  4. Mark Trotier

    This for me is among the best documentaries of this type I have seen. It was moving and informative. Brilliant!

  5. Bulletking

    What a brilliant documentary. One of the best I've seen. Exceptional brilliant photography & 📹. Thank you for ur painstaking efforts n direction in bringing out this documentary

  6. heybill

    very informative

  7. Cory Dantos

    I was basically grinning the whole way watching it. Its such a cool documentary. I don t know why I still cant stop smiling lol.

  8. Maryam Hashemi

    So beautiful, we have been watching this documentary over and over again sharing it with friends and going over thd favourite moments. What a great job.

  9. Nagini

    As a photographer... dance lover, horse trainer and snake lover... and lover of India... this is absolutely fabulous. So incredibly beautiful and vibrant... love your style and awesome cinematography. Fantastic from beginning to end. Namaste.

  10. artslab

    Excellent documentary. Perfectly edited, really interesting to watch. Very recommended.

  11. leons

    wonderfully Did.........

  12. Dodie

    This is a great documentary....These are a beautiful people..I recommend this video highly...

  13. matt

    Amazing wow....this should win an award.

  14. RK

    This is awesome. Very tastefully done.

  15. Jenifer

    Love the music and the film is awesome. I have watched this documentary many times. Wanted to make sure I didn't miss anything.

  16. Mike

    Beautiful people. Beautiful music. Beautiful movie. Beautiful.

  17. Jen

    It was alright. But I'm concerned that it was overly romanticized. I would have been very interested to have had subtitles for all of the day-to-day conversation that you hear throughout the documentary. Like when the ladies are in tents all singing? I'd like to hear what the songs mean. When they catch the cobra in the village and all sorts of people are talking? I would like to hear what sort of things are being said. I feel like just having the narrator tell us about what's happening does not give a proper grasp of what these people's lives are like. Without such a simple thing as hiring a translater and making subtitles of the dialogue, this "glimpse" into the Cobra Gypsy life doesn't feel genuine.

  18. Rick

    This is a very special documentary. A true culture. Wish it were longer and in great depth but maybe Raphael will make another. Bravo Raphael, enjoyed every minute of it.

  19. Karen

    This documentary was the most beautiful and amazing thing I've seen in a long time. I want to watch it again and again. I've always felt an affinity for India (maybe a past life?), and I may have some Gypsy blood. Stunning and amazing.

  20. Vikram

    This documemtry is superb.. cameraman did wonderful photography. It shows beautiful aspacts of these gypsies life.
    Full on entertainment..!

  21. Jasna

    It is so good to see and to show us GOOD things and places and people and ways of life!!
    Biodiversity of flora-fauna&humans - this is the real riches of our planet. Mister Reza and his companions are brave and positive thinkers! Of course we all know that mother Earth is not black-white stuff!!! But the bright side has more Spirit! Thanks from Slovenija.

  22. Mike

    Life is Magic.

  23. Vicky

    Why is this video no longer available?

  24. Barry

    Fantastic, mesmerizing and beautiful.

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