The Train of Salt and Sugar | Chicago Reader

The Train of Salt and Sugar

An impressive product of Mozambique's emerging film industry, this drama from writer-director Licínio Azevedo explores the fraught relationship between civilians and the military during the civil war that divided Mozambique from the late 1970s to the early '90s. A group of men, women, and children travel to Malawi by train to exchange salt for sugar; along the way they endure violence inflicted by both rebel forces in the bush and government soldiers onboard, who've been hired to protect the passengers but regularly assault them as well. The most effective scenes involve the main characters, a young nurse and a conscience-stricken lieutenant, calling out the hypocrisy inherent in the more brutish soldiers' actions. These two fall in love, though their conversations about morality in the fog of war are enticing enough. In Portuguese with subtitles.



  • Licinio Azevedo


  • Mário Mabjaia
  • Thiago Justino
  • Matamba Joaquim
  • Melanie de Vales Rafael
  • Horácio Guiamba
  • Celeste Baloi
  • Hermelinda Simela
  • Vítor Raposo
  • Absalão Maciel
  • Tonecas Xavier
  • Absalão Narduela
  • Abdil Juma
  • Sabina Fonseca
  • António Nipita


  • Pandora Telles
  • Pablo Iraola

What others are saying

  • Add a review


    Select a star to rate.