Film: Tabu

by H. Clent Bowers

Magazine     >    Reviews

Written by H. Clent Bowers for THE ARTISTS FORUM MAGAZINE
Edited by
Courtesy of Adopt Films

4 out of 5 stars

Director: Miguel Gomes
Writers: Miguel Gomes, Mariana Ricardo
Producers: Luís Urbano, Sandro Aguilar
Director of Photography: Rui Poças
Cast: Teresa Madruga, Isabel Cardoso, Ana Moreira, Laura Soveral, Carloto Cotta, Henrique Espírito Santo, Cândido Ferreira


LOS ANGELES, CA (December 30, 2012) This is a story of two neighbors and a maid. Pilar (Teresa Madruga), is recently retired, unusually curious, and drawn to her neighbor. The neighbor, an aging beauty who loves slot machines, fears that her caregiver, Santa (Isabel Cardoso), is conjuring spells on her. Pilar is privy to the tales of being held hostage as well as other stories from our protagonist, octogenarian Aurora (Laura Soveral). While the maid does look a bit suspect and often fed up with Aurora, Santa is merely trying to handle and comfort her.

Carloto Cotta and Ana Moreira in “Tabu”

At first you think you know where this comic tale may lead. But, when she is finally in the hospital at deaths door, we discover sweet Aurora has a very deep and intoxicating secret to share. A story that she had promised someone never to speak of. She asks her two companions to try and find a person who may still be somewhere in town. We are all of a sudden taken back 50 years to the life of young Aurora, (Ana Moreira) while an unknown voice retells the story of why this person and their secret is Tabu.

As the wheels turn, we find out the essence and reason for the drama in our beauty’s face. This is a story of forbidden passion that is as deep and rich as a crocodile’s eyes and as tough and gritty as its hide.  It is a story so steamy that at times you feel you’re witnessing a crime, and in fact, in most places you would be. The film is beautifully shot in black and white. Each scene looks like a trip through an old photograph book or slide projection.  The music is just right, adding a slight humor with the time periods. Miguel Gomes‘s direction and story telling are superb. Tabu is a beautiful, nostalgic narrative you won’t want to miss. It opens in Los Angeles on January 25, 2013.

For more information about Tabu, visit:

“Tabu” promotional poster
Carloto Cotta and Ana Moreira in “Tabu”
Ana Moreira in “Tabu”

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