Sifinja - The Iron Bride

© Haensch
70 minutes / Colour / 2009
Directed by
Valerie Haensch

Country of production Germany

A film about mobility, human creativity, and technology in a Sudanese truck community. The English Bedford-Lorry was introduced to Sudan in the late 1960s. Since then, local craftsmen technically modify the truck into an ideal vehicle, adequate for traveling off-road and for performing customers’ expectations. The craftsmen and drivers call the lorry “Sifinja” because it is soft and comfortable like the plastic slippers it is named after. In different places in Sudan the carpenters and blacksmiths not only create a shiny iron bride, but they change the whole structure of the lorry through a highly unorthodox performance. Following closely the daily work, art and history of truck-modding on the Nile, a fascinating way of African creativity dealing with global commodities – the automobiles - is opened up. The documentary weaves the original sound of hammering and sawing, drilling and riveting, into a rhythmic, exhilarating audio-visual adventure.

Language and subtitles Original Language with English Subtitles

Region North and Northeast Africa

Country Sudan

Keywords Infrastructure / Transport Material Culture Art / Artists / Artisans