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Tabu Reviews

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Betsy Sharkey
Los Angeles Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The audience is left to imagine much of the story, though it is clear it involves love, betrayal, guilt, regret and a recurring crocodile.

Full Review Source: Los Angeles Times | Original Score: 2/5

January 24, 2013

It's far-from-enthralling.

Full Review Source: 3AW | Original Score: 2/5

May 17, 2013
A.O. Scott
New York Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Its artfulness seems like an alibi, an excuse for keeping the ugliness of history out of the picture.

Full Review Source: New York Times | Original Score: 2.5/5

December 26, 2012
Ron Wilkinson
Monsters and Critics

A dreadfully slow screenplay in the second half undercuts the interesting handling of black and white exposition.

Full Review Source: Monsters and Critics | Original Score: 5/10

January 14, 2013
Antonia Quirke
Financial Times

There are times when you feel the whole thing is better listened to than watched.

Full Review Source: Financial Times | Original Score: 2/5

September 6, 2012
Joshua Rothkopf
Time Out New York
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Churlish though it sounds, you'll want to arrive for this b&w Portuguese drama about 45 minutes late.

Full Review Source: Time Out New York | Original Score: 3/5

December 27, 2012
Philip French
Observer [UK]

Naively simplistic in its narrative, opaque in its politics, the movie's appeal is hard to understand.

Full Review Source: Observer [UK]

September 9, 2012
Nikola Grozdanovic
The Playlist

It's one of those rarities when too many compliments are not enough and the recommendation to see it as soon as it's near you cannot be stressed enough.

Full Review Source: The Playlist | Original Score: A

September 27, 2013
Blake Howard
2UE That Movie Show

Tabu begs us not to forget the once beautiful, dramatic, and adventurous wilds of youth that are extinguished in the depressingly inevitable isolation of old age.

Full Review Source: 2UE That Movie Show | Original Score: 3/5

June 3, 2012
Farran Smith Nehme
New York Post
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Portuguese director Miguel Gomes' latest film moves through different styles and eras, and proves that shooting in black and white is as versatile as it ever was.

Full Review Source: New York Post | Original Score: 3.5/4

December 28, 2012
John Semley
Slant Magazine

The pangs of romance, eroticism, anguish, and longing (both for the stolen moments of private passion and for the sense-making schematics of Empire) transcend any period of cinema Tabu may evoke.

Full Review Source: Slant Magazine | Original Score: 4/4

September 17, 2012
Donald Clarke
Irish Times

For all its cleverly shot post- modernity, Tabu inadvertently argues for the power of old-school storytelling.

Full Review Source: Irish Times | Original Score: 4/5

September 6, 2012
Ann Lewinson
Boston Phoenix

If in the first half Gomes dares the audience to be bored, the second half is a cinephile's payoff.

Full Review Source: Boston Phoenix | Original Score: 3.5/4

January 15, 2013
Simon Miraudo

Does the plot make sense? Probably, but that doesn't really matter. Tabu is about memories and fantasies and folklores, and since when have any of them been consistent with truth or logic.

Full Review Source: Quickflix | Original Score: 3/5

June 13, 2012
Carmen Gray
Total Film

This blend of tongue-in-cheek exoticism and desire so strong it makes crocodiles melancholic amply rewards your patience.

Full Review Source: Total Film | Original Score: 4/5

August 28, 2012
Siobhan Synnot

Shot in black and white, it's occasionally perverse (a dialogue-free section feels like a gauntlet thrown down to cinephiles) but also lushly romantic.

Full Review Source: Scotsman | Original Score: 4/5

September 3, 2012
Ian Buckwalter
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Few films are this smart about subtly couching their allegorical aspirations within more straightforward narratives; fewer still are able to do so with such energetically inventive virtuoso style.

Full Review Source: NPR | Original Score: 9.5/10

December 27, 2012
Landon Palmer
Film School Rejects

'Tabu' is a strange and hypnotizing moving image poem with no comprehensive or unifying point of comparison.

Full Review Source: Film School Rejects | Original Score: A

June 2, 2014
Pamela Jahn
Electric Sheep

Elegantly weaving together colonial history, past cinema and personal memories, it unashamedly touches the heart, the most complicated muscle of the human anatomy.

Full Review Source: Electric Sheep

September 7, 2012
Thomas Caldwell
Cinema Autopsy

While the path through this unconventional film is not always obvious, it is a sensuous, mysterious and intoxicating path worth taking.

Full Review Source: Cinema Autopsy | Original Score: 4/5

May 16, 2013
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