The one to travel in the time with the movie « El embrujo de Shanghaï »

Yes, it’s really Barcelona that it’s about « El embrujo de Shanghaï ». I just see the movie, it’s good, very Barcelona and I think we can discover a lot about the city in 1948  with. So I will try to tell you what I’ve see and trying to not spoil ! 🙂

Embrujo : charm, enchantment, spell, magic (also charms and bewitchment)

So, in the disorder :

  • Political landscape : « Solidaridad Nacional »

solidaridad nacional

Capitán Blay asks for a the newspaper and burn it just after, in public area. Why ?

After research I just find this to a reseller : « SOLIDARIDAD NACIONAL. Falange. Diario de la Revolución Nacional Sindicalista. Por la Patria, el pan y la Justicia. Además de tratar la actualidad de la 2ª Guerra Mundial contiene artículos sobre laFalange y Jose Antonio Primo de Rivera. » (source) and this « Diario de Falange Española Tradicionalista y de las J.O.N.S. » (source)

Falange, JONS…  To understand this comportement, we have to know what is these movements. Falange Española was spanish political movements, created in the 30s and close to the Italian fascism. We are in the midle of the story of the spanish civil war : « During the Spanish Civil War the doctrine of the Falange was used by General Franco, who virtually took possession of its ideology »

  • La Tranquilidad, the bar the less quiet of Barcelona !

le bar la tranquilidad

« It was only a dreamer, he served café-cognac in the bar « La tranquilidad » to Paralelo. He sold anarchists books and revolutionary pamphlets to customers. »

This one seems to be very knows ! Despite what you might think with his name, La Tranquilidad was one of the bars most turbulent of Barcelona during the first years of the XX century and until its demolition in the 40s. La Tranquilidad was 69 Parallel, next to the current Victoria Theatre.

Parallel Avenue was very « scamp ». The Broadway reference of Barcelona from 1894 to 1970. It was a place of leisure and entertainment with a large number of cabarets and theaters.

More : suite101 , indymedia, el periodico, iberianature

  • The Catalan !

parle moi en catalan

« Speaks me in catalan, fool ! »

  • Challenge of religion ?

las animas et le curé

« When I come back, I will go to « Las Animas » and will eat a priest ».

It seems that « Las Animas » is a church and now name Iglesia de San Miguel de los Santos, in Gracia.

las sermonas del padre laburu

« For insomnia, no need for sleeping pills. One of my clients was cured by drinking milk and listening to  sermons of Father Laburu at the radio »

It seems that Laburu was a priest and doctor jesuit basque.

  • Still an issue with the flag

qué bandeja

« -What flag ?
– Ours of course !
– How do you know? And if that wasn’t ours ? »

I’ve already talk about flags in Barcelona in this article : « The one where you can choose your flag »

  • Means of locomotion and simple pleasures

chocolates torras

The tram was very present in Barcelona. I think it disappear next to 1970. Currently, there are some very modern tram lines, but it’s marginal.

We can also see on this picture « Chocolates Torras ». Founded in 1890, Chocolates Torras was the first  to commercialize a sugar free cocoa. They use Stevia (a plant native to South America). Perfect for people with health problems, in diet or without gluten.

It seems that you can find a factory in barcelona : Riera 14, 2, 2. the big factory is in the province of Girona.

  • The souvenir of Barcelona : alpargatas/espadrille



Alpargatas, Catalan espadrilles, have been made in Catalonia since the 14th century at least. They are worn by the dancer of Sardana and currently by both men and women on summer. The artist Dali himself was wearing this shoes. Famous : The Manual Alpargatera, in the Gotic. Started just after the civil war (40’s) combines ancient tradition and fashion.

  • Calle Cerdena

rue cerdena

The street where live the protagonist.

  • Decoration in Barcelona

jeune fille

les portes ont deux battants

Remember the beautifully tinted windows and double doors (both in my flat so yes it’s Barcelona style).

  • Polution in Barcelona

le gaz et les égouts de barcelone

« All sewer in Barcelona have accumulated so much gas tahn just a spark of a tram could blow the entire city: the port, Las Ramblas and the mountain of Montjuic. »

I really don’t know if there is some true in this… Do you know something about the tuberculosis and factory’s pollution in Barcelona ? At this time, factory were next to the sea, they were nos beach and all waste going into the sea.

  • Barcelona, capital of prostitution

Bodel rue rios rosas

le bordel

A brothel, street Rios Rosas. In the Middle Ages they were all in the Raval. An head statue designated them at the entry. For a long time the city was named the brothel of the Mediterranean.

  • Other views :

cine rovira

The Ciné Rovira with the beautiful woman… I don’t know if this cinema exist but Rovira Beleta was a film maker from Barcelona (« Los Tarantos »)

bar el greco

Bar « El Greco », do you know where it is ?

la salud

La Salud : neighbourhood of the Gracia District (known for Park Güell de Gaudi)

plaça lesseps

Lesseps : Still in Gracia

quartier  quel quartier

Where are theses places ? According to the story it is in Gracia but I really don’t know where it was filmed. If you have any idea, tell me 🙂

The whole movie in spanish (with bad quality, so just borrow and watch with a projector, please 😉 )

2 réflexions sur “The one to travel in the time with the movie « El embrujo de Shanghaï »

  1. Ça fais plaisir de te voir ici Letizia 🙂
    Je ne sais pas si ce film est facilement trouvable, il a gagné plusieurs Goya mais semble peu connu en France. Dis moi si tu le vois et n’hésites pas, si tu reconnais des lieux que je n’ai pas détecté 🙂

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