The old Portuguese Aurora and her Cape Verdean housekeeper Santa live next door to Pilar, whose purpose in life is to do good. Hardly anyone thanks her for this, especially not the notoriously suspicious Aurora, who spends the rest of her life gambling away her scarce money in the Casino of Estoril. When the old woman dies, Pilar finds the trail of an old lover of Aurora.
To make films without referring to film history is unthinkable for director Miguel Gomes. And so TABU quotes a title by Friedrich Wilhelm Murnau not without reason. Gomes interprets and rearranges historical motifs in his third feature film. While the first part of the film draws a society in soft black and white tones that indulges in nostalgia, in the second part it receives what it longs for: stirring melodrama, slapstick, contrasts, passion.