Porto Screen 7 articles

Porto

2016

Porto Poster
  • The late Anton Yelchin gives one of his last performances in this quietly bombastic and emotionally oblivious romantic drama . . . Klinger plays coyly with the time scheme, as if to mask the lack of substance with tricks of form. A gratuitously ugly scene of Jake’s physical abuse of Mati is a casually checked-off plot point.

  • Tainted by a script that tells us virtually nothing about Mati's past other than that she was once a little crazy, her later choices seem callous and questionable. Yet, to any sensible woman, Jake is a terrible bet, directionless and shady — we’ve already seen him try to wheedle drinks from strange women — and the movie’s refusal to call him out is irksome.

  • Klinger, making his narrative feature debut, conveys the lovers' fragmented memories by switching between Super 8, 16-millimeter, and 35-millimeter film. Unfortunately the thin narrative reveals little about the characters aside from their brief encounter, and the actors lack chemistry; their romantic connection feels like lust amplified by loneliness.

  • Klinger's cine-literacy is well known to those familiar with his writing and programming, but what's special about Porto, especially as a debut narrative feature, is the relative internalization of its influences, which feel secondary to its larger grappling with a timeless emotional enigma: namely, infatuation, and the question of how such a mighty force can also be so fleeting.

  • As directed by Gabe Klinger and cowritten by Larry Gross ("48 Hours"), it’s less than meets the eye and ear. It’s dramatically thin and confusingly edited in places, and there are basic problems in the lovers’ characterizations that are never convincingly addressed . . . The film’s clever editing (credited to Klinger and Geraldine Mangenot) jumps back and forth through time in intriguing, sometimes intoxicating ways, and even when the drama flags there’s always a stunning image to stare at.

  • Gabe Klinger’s first narrative feature winds up feeling appropriately elegiac in a multitude of ways. Ravishingly shot on location in the eponymous Portuguese coastal city (long deserving of just such a cinematic valentine) in an elegant shuffle of aspect ratios and film stocks, this narratively slender item is unapologetically a mood piece: a film that’s in love with love, in love with cinema, and concerned that neither is built to last.

  • I’m not a 35mm fetishist, but heavens, Gabe Klinger‘s Porto is lovely. Even before the first credit, the warm crackle of the soundtrack fading in is transporting... Klinger, production designer Ricardo Preto and cinematographer Wyatt Garfield, who draws vibrant blues and greens seemingly from the shadows and sets nights aglow with the bronze of candles and streetlights, have revived a Europe we’d thought was known to us now only in the cinema of the mid-20th century.

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