Paradise: Hope

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Austria | 2013 | 90 minutes | Ulrich Seidl

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.

  • Original Language Title: Paradies: Hoffnung
  • 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