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“Prompted something approaching a collective swoon at its world premiere. The strange magic of Mr. Gomes’s films stems in part from the way they utterly thwart classification. His 2008 feature, OUR BELOVED MONTH OF AUGUST, is a fiction that becomes a documentary of its own creation. TABU, which manages to be dryly absurd and deeply romantic, begins with a surreal vignette about a widowed hunter who throws himself to the crocodiles, and perhaps comes back as one. It moves on to recount a few days in the lives of a devout spinster, her tale-spinning elderly neighbor and the neighbor’s stoic maid in modern-day Lisbon; and makes one more startling leap to the mountainside plains of an unnamed Portuguese colony in Africa decades earlier to chronicle an impossible love…TABU – named for the final film by F.W. Murnau, one of cinema’s great romantics, and filmed in luminous black-and-white – is a living, breathing demonstration of cinephilia in action.” – Dennis Lim, The New York Times.




“So ingenuous, well-executed, and filled with unexpected cinematic pleasures that it’s restorative—a movie to reconfirm your faith in the motion picture medium.”
– J. Hoberman,

“Pick of the week!  (Gomes) is a seductive craftsman of starling power.  Not just the last movie released in 2012, but possibly the most original of them all.”
– Andrew O’Hehir, Salon

“Droll, mysterious, enchanting, and altogether singular. There’s nothing out there entirely like it.”
– Scott Tobias, The Onion

****! [4 stars]
[4 stars]
“Gorgeous.  While the style is enchanting, the substance is, too.  Not a bad way for movie fans to end one year, or begin another.”

– Elizabeth Weitzman, New York Daily News

“A brilliantly nuanced, deeply imagined psycho-excavation of modern Europe.”
– Richard Brody, The New Yorker

“(A) masterpiece of faux-naiveté.  A deadpan comedy… While the subject matter – the colonial legacy – is serious, Gomes’s style is light, brisk, deceptively frivolous. A work of sublimely sophisticated primitivism.” 
– Nick Pinkerton, Village Voice

“An F.W. Murnau-inspired reflection on Europe’s colonial past. An impish poetic meditation on melodrama, slapstick and passion.” 
– David Locke, Sight & Sound

“Mind-bending and infinitely mysterious”
– Bilge Ebiri, New York magazine

“A sublime mix of melancholy, comedy, and sexual passion. TABU has to be seen to be believed.” 
– Graham Fuller, Artinfo

“Superb.  A potent and surprisingly poignant rumination on the power of storytelling and the legacy of colonialism.” 
– Jason Anderson, Artforum

“(A) gracious love letter to cinema."
– Nick James, Sight + Sound

“Another charmingly eccentric exercise in meta-fiction from Portugal’s offbeat new directing star.”
– Deborah Young, The Hollywood Reporter