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Monica (Yuliet Cruz) and Aldo (Armando Miguel Gòmez) live in the rural Cuban town of Melaza, named after the sugar-cane fields that once flourished. When the mill temporarily closes down, the town seems to stand still and the couple are caught within this frozen state.

They live in a tiny cottage with their daughter and grandmother, with little room to spare. The couple try desperately to earn extra money, which leads them into more and more trouble.

There is something truly genuine about this film. Cruz and Miguel Gomez earnestly and accurately portray the love the couple shares. While director Carlos Lechuga navigates the rural town with a sense of fantasy that serenely complements the story. (ATS)

****

Sep 8, Dendy Opera Quays, 9/2 East Circular Quay, $18.50, sydneylatinofilmfestival.org