Saturday, February 9, 2013

Film Review: Miguel Gomes' Tabu

Take a little David Lynch, toss in some Luis Buñuel, spice with a bit of Herzog, and flavour with a dash of his fellow countryman, Manoel di Oliveira, and you have Miguel Gomes' Tabu.  But don't get me wrong, for even though one can easily see traces of influence from all of these directors in Gomes' work, the Portuguese filmmaker more than stands on his own two cinematic feet in this beautiful and lyrical film.  Divided into two parts ("Paradise Lost" and "Paradise"), Tabu is the story of Aurora, an emotionally troubled elderly woman living in modern day Lisbon, and, in flashback, the tale of a young Aurora and her love affair that, if we are given to believing Gomes' flights of fancy, pretty much caused the downfall of colonialism in Africa.  But more than anything, this film is about love, about beauty, about the Bohemian sensibilities of these ideas, and the way they are ripped asunder, leaving us basically as a shell of a human being.  Uplifting, huh?

Shot in grippingly sharp black and white, and paying homage to F.W. Murnau's 1931 film of the same name (it too is divided into "Paradise" and "Paradise Lost"), Gomes first gives us a seemingly mundane modern day existence - a sort of cinema of endurance-esque take - and then, in the second half, he lets us all see the beauty, the love, the romantic idealism that, sadly, leads to such a mundane existence.  This feeling is beautifully captured - both visually (a shivering innocence can be found in the work of cinematographer Rui Poças) and in the acting (Ana Moreira and Laura Soveral, as the two ages of Aurora, are quite resplendent) - and the film is equal parts lustful and harrowing - sometimes with these two particulars encompassing the same space and time even.  What I am trying to say here, is that Tabu is a romantically induced tragedy, shot in the most succulent cinematic manner.  In other words, what cinema is all about.  The film's detractors have complained about Gomes not taking a serious enough stance on colonialism, and this attitude comes mainly from, instead of the director showing the darkness of war and revolution, he shows the darkness of love lost forever.  The actors show the range of emotion in their eyes, in their movements, in their bodies.  Cinema is meant to entertain, but it is also meant to show the utter beauty in everything as well - even if that beauty acts as tragedy, as it does not only here, but in much of classical literature and art - and that is exactly what Gomes does in Tabu.


Unknown said...

Nice review. I agree with you about the film's lack of comment with regards to colonialism. That's not what the film is about. I thought it was so beautiful, a real treat.

Kevyn Knox said...

Thanx, A gorgeous film. I have read several reviews where Gomes has been derided for his supposed lack of sincerity, or whatever, toward colonialism. Those critics just do not get that the film is not about that.

Unknown said...

This web side royeche ten naked abaido yauna transmitted video cie इस वेब साइड royeche दस नग्न abaido yauna प्रेषित वीडियो सीआईई

1 / Calcutta, father and their baby daughter yauna transmitted daughter's stomach, police grepatarera = 1 on the vedio Images Vedio छवियाँ पर 1 / कोलकाता, पिता और उनके बच्चे बेटी प्रेषित yauna बेटी के पेट, पुलिस grepatarera =1

2/ naika sabanura hotel intercourse with her boyfriend on the real = two vedio वास्तविक = दो vedio पर उसके प्रेमी के साथ रे / naika sabanura होटल संभोग

3 / aunt nephew with the sexually transmitted real = 5 vedio image / यौन साथ 3 / चाची भतीजे वास्तविक = 5 vedio छवि को प्रेषित .Disclosure

4 / mother and son killed parents on jauno obstructs Milne parents. And the mother's sexual intercourse = 3 vedio. Issued 4 / माँ और बेटे jauno पर माता-पिता मिल्ने माता-पिता भी नुकसान पहुँचा मार डाला। और माँ का संभोग 3 vedio =। जारी

5 / dulabhai salike wanted to force the video clip had been forced to repeatedly salike = 6 vedio. Issued 5 / dulabhai salike वीडियो क्लिप को बार-बार salike = 6 vedio करने के लिए मजबूर किया गया था के लिए मजबूर करना चाहता था। जारी

6 / praibeta master daughter sexually transmitted = 1 vedio. Issued 6 / praibeta मास्टर बेटी का यौन। = 1 vedio प्रेषित जारी।

7 / big brother's wife wanted video jimmikare repeatedly forced sexual intercourse = 8 vedio. Issued 7 / बड़े भाई की पत्नी के वीडियो jimmikare बार-बार संभोग = 8 vedio मजबूर करना चाहता था। जारी

8 / younger man to take the water to the hotel codarapara = two vedio sister होटल codarapara करने के लिए पानी लेने के लिए 8 / छोटे आदमी = माँ पर दो vedio बहन ।

9 / Mama told her bhagnike Thailand engaged in the business of the body of his uncle filed bhagni = 10 vedio business man on the body of his niece 9 / माँ थाईलैंड उनके चाचा के शरीर के कारोबार में लगे bhagnike उसे बताया कि उसकी भतीजी के शरीर पर bhagni = 10 vedio व्यापार आदमी दायर।

10 / maternal sister to marry the rape failing mamike three Bandeau vedio prakasa = 4 vedio sister 10 / मातृ बहन mamike तीन Bandeau vedio Prakasa = 4 vedio प्रेषित जारी