Tabu (2012) MIFF Film Review


Tabu is a film told in two parts. The first is of Pillar, her elderly neighbour Aurora and Aurora’s maid Santa. Pillar is concerned that Aurora is mentally unstable, but she is more ill than Pillar had imagined. On her deathbed, Aurora asks for Gian Luca, her long-lost love. This takes us to the second part of the film, where the tale of Aurora and Gian Luca is recounted in the style of a silent movie.

Overall, the film is slow-moving, meandering around and covering very little ground over a long time, but this is certainly not a criticism. I was absolutely transfixed. Each moment was not a second too long, and there was something deeply beautiful about the entire film. My only real criticism is that at the end, it felt as if there was more to the story. That perhaps the connection between the two parts needed some kind of full stop. It wasn’t that it hadn’t told its story; it was more that I felt like I needed some kind of goodbye to Pillar and Santa.

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