A night in coastal Portugal sees an derelict American laborer (Anton Yelchin, in one of his final roles) and a nervous French archaeology grad tyro (Lucie Lucas) accommodate for talk, sex and romantic fragmentation in Gabe Klinger’s “Porto.”
But distinct a some-more conventionally approached rom-com or swoony intrigue about a night that altered everything, this serious-as-a-heart-attack two-hander mixes adult time frames and film formats (8mm, 16mm, 35mm) to advise an knowledge being remembered and played out during a same time by a participants.
Yelchin’s Jake and Lucas’s Mati initial close eyes during a dig, afterwards during a sight hire and finally during a restaurant, where a initial proposition is made. But his vibe is uncomfortably creepy, hers inexplicably accommodating, and there seems to be a accordant bid on Klinger’s partial to leave unexplored Jake’s aroused stalker tendencies (briefly decorated in a flash-forwards) so as to some-more rapturously commemorate a sensuality of strangers coupling. The film is reduction a story of equals, with Yelchin’s possessive appearance sincerely winning Lucas’ looser, in-the-moment portrayal.
That’s not to contend that cinematographer Wyatt Garfield’s approach with grainy, insinuate celluloid in an ancient city isn’t entrancingly windy — a best thing about Klinger’s time/memory/dream cultured is how it looks: a visible homogeneous of an audiophile’s nostalgia for vinyl. But a time jumping feels precious, and a screenplay — created by Klinger and Larry Gross — falls too simply into clichés about severe group and uneasy women to ever grasp something truly musical about a highs and fallouts of possibility encounters.
In English, French, Portuguese with English subtitles
Running time: 1 hour, 16 minutes
Playing: Landmark NuArt, West L.A.