Nocturnal and steeped in sinister chiaroscuro, award-winning director Pedro Costa's latest film follows Ventura, the enigmatic lead of Costa's earlier groundbreaking Colossal Youth, as he traverses a seemingly endless night populated by the ghosts of his past. From the restless spirits that haunt this decaying urban landscape, Costa conjures a spellbinding cinematic experience. Featured in many Top 5 Films of the Year lists worldwide, Horse Money is a hauntingly beautiful contemplation of Portugal's tumultuous past and uncertain future from a true poet of contemporary European cinema.
On paper it sounded like my cup of tea - a slow burning, dreamy trek through a man's life and memories. I'm okay with a lack of conventional plot and I tend to prefer cinema which is more naturalistic, but I found so little to grasp onto here that I never got invested in it at all. I felt like there was something I was missing - some context or knowledge of Portuguese culture - that maybe would have helped. From the synopsis, it sounds like it features a character from a previous film (Colossal Youth), so maybe seeing that would have helped. By itself, I found it difficult to get anything out of unfortunately.