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Portugal, 2012, 120 Minute Running Time
Additional Countries: Brazil, France, Germany
Topics: Experimental, Latino, Romance
Program: World Cinema Now
Language: Portuguese English Sub-Titles

Awards: Winner: FIPRESCI Award, Alfred Bauer Award, Berlin International Film Festival

A rising star on the film festival circuit, Miguel Gomes (Our Beloved Month of August) has fashioned one of the most distinctive and distinguished movies of the year in Tabu, a desperately romantic love story filtered through old age and the remembered past.

The conceit is simple yet original: Gomes begins the film in contemporary Lisbon, where middle-aged Pilar (Teresa Madruga) takes a kindly interest in several elderly friends, including her next door neighbor Aurora (Laura Soveral), whose failing faculties are a cause for concern. This section, “Paradise Lost”, then segues into “Paradise”, the reminiscence of Aurora’s long-lost lover, Ventura, who astonishes Pilar with his tale of passion and murder in colonial Africa in the early 1960s.

Referencing Murnau’s film of the same name, Gomes shoots in silvery monochrome, “Paradise Lost” in 35mm, while “Paradise” is on much grainier 16mm stock, and in the style of a silent film melodrama (albeit with sound effects, voice over, and music – including a Portugese version of “Be My Baby” that will haunt your dreams). This is cinema: whimsical, wistful, and so melancholy even the crocodiles are moved.

FIPRESCI Prize, Berlin Film Festival

DIRECTOR: Miguel Gomes
Producer: Sandro Aguilar, Luís Urbano
Editor: Telmo Churro, Miguel Gomes
Screenwriter: Miguel Gomes, Mariana Ricardo
Cinematographer: Rui Poças
Music: Joana Sa
Principal Cast: Teresa Madruga, Laura Soveral, Ana Moreira, Carloto Cotta, Henrique Espirito Santo, Isabel Cardoso, Ivo Muller, Manuel Mesquites
Filmography: Our Beloved Month of August (2008), The Face You Deserve (2004)
Print Source: Adopt Films -

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