November 8 - 14, 2013
The surprisingly tender conclusion to Ulrich Seidl's Paradise trilogy follows 13-year-old Melanie, who makes unexpected new friendships and develops a mad crush on the camp doctor while at a weight loss camp.
Melanie (Melanie Lenz) is not at all excited about the drab, industrialized campground in the middle of the woods where dieticians and fitness coaches impose a boot-camp style regimen. That is, until she meets Verena (Verena Lehbauer), a ribald cabin mate who loves to share tales of her extensive sexual experience, and even sneaks Melanie into town for a spirited night of drinking and dancing. This awakens feelings within Melanie, which manifest themselves through the stomach cramps that she fakes in order to feed her infatuation with the 40-yearold camp doctor.
While Paradise: Hope contains all the hallmarks of Seidl’s distinctive and provocative style, here he fills the story with a sensitive openness, with Melanie as a particularly poignant heroine, that provides an unexpected and refreshing finale to the series, ending on a true note of hope.
- Director: Ulrich Seidl
- Principal Cast: Melanie Lenz, Verena Lehbauer, Joseph Lorenz, Viviane Bartsch
- Country: Austria, Germany, France
- Year: 2013
- Running Time: 90 minutes
- Language: German
- Has Subtitles: Yes
- Format: DCP
- US Distributor: Strand Releasing