Mozambique - A Tempestade (The Storm)

Transmission date: Wednesday, 20 August 2008
Language: Portuguese with English subtitles

It takes real courage to change what is wrong

A moving story about violence in a small fishing community in Mozambique. A young fisherman must risk his relationship with his father to save his mother from harm.

Story synopsis

Santos and his son Noe are out fishing. The catch is small and Santos is furious. He wishes they could buy an outboard motor to get to better waters. And he wants Noe to borrow the money from his wife Rosa, to get it. Noe refuses and Santos is angry. Meanwhile, the women wait onshore for the boats to come in. Rosa and her mother, who has come from the mainland to sell goods and buy fish, wait too, together with Ruth and Maria, Santos’ wives. Later, still furious about the poor catch, Santos becomes violent and takes out his rage on Ruth, who he beats with a belt. Noe feels helpless. This has happened many times and Ruth cannot take it any more. Julia, Noe’s little sister has stopped speaking for fear. And Rosa has had enough. Santos will kill Ruth if he is not stopped soon. When Santos steals Rosa’s money to buy his outboard motor, Noe realises things must change. But does he have the courage to stand up to his powerful father to protect the people he loves?

Director: Orlando Mesquita

*Orlando on domestic violence

‘This film is about domestic violence and in Mozambique we still don’t have a law about domestic violence. Domestic violence is one of the most important issues in our society. I have organised workshops where I have screened the film. For instance, I screened the film in a fishing village. A lot of men came to see the film. There was much disagreement and argument, but eventually some of the men in the village believed the young man in the film was right to stand up to domestic violence.

The challenge was how to make a film in the middle of the ocean and also to put first-time actors in front of a camera and make them into actors.’

Bio

Orlando Mesquita started his cinematography career in 1983. He has worked in various areas of cinematographic production, such as directing, production, editing, music composition, graphics and animation, among others. As an editor, he has worked alongside both national and international directors and now has more than three hundred movies to his credit. He is best known for his work on movies A Bola, Rodas da Rua and Eclipse.

Producer: Bert Sonneschijn

Bert (47) was born in Holland and came to Mozambique as a civil engineer in 1989. He studied directing and camera work at the Dutch Film Academy and established a production company. He co-wrote and produced his first animation film called Muscolinho and went on to produce a documentary that won an award at the Portuguese Film Festival. Bert is currently working on children’s literature as well as producing edutainment games for school children.