Paradise Now details
|Starring:||Kais Nashef, Ali Suliman, Lubna Azabal, Amer Hlehel, Hiam Abbass|
|Genres:||Drama, World Cinema|
|Studio:||WARNER HOME VIDEO|
|Run time:||1 hour 28 minutes|
|Rental release:||14 Aug 2006|
By Tom Charity from LOVEFiLM
Paradise Now is Robert Stone's flashy documentary about two childhood friends who are recruited for a suicide bombing in Tel Aviv.
Most helpful review
Paradise NowBy SAI81 (360 reviews) from Tonbridge , 03 May 2006
[Highly rated reviewer]am sure some people will take one look at the coverage of Paradise Now and vow not to see it. It's a Palestinian film about 24 hours in the life of two young childhood friends who are chosen for a 'martyrdom mission' in Israel. Given this there will be people who leap to the conclusion that it must be sympathetic to suicide bombers, or endorsing what they do. These people are wrong.
Paradise Now is a sober, serious film which takes a long hard look at people we usualy just arbitraily brand as monsters. The first 20 minutes of the film lets us get to know Khaled (Ali Suliman) and Said (Kais Nashef) we spend an afternoon with them; two young men much like any others and we get to like them which makes what follows all the more shocking. While the film refuses, to its credit, to demonise Khaled and Said it absolutely doesn't endorse what they plan to do and shows the terrorist network around them as fundamentally evil and dishonest.
The film is often chilling; witness Khaled's video statement about his actions, flawlessly played by Suliman, but doesn't forget that the grimness of it's subject needs some leavening and at the most tense moments a brief second of comedy is granted to you, almost as a way of letting you relax.
Leads Suliman and Nashef are spectacular and surrounded by an able supporting cast, notably Lubna Azabal as a young teacher who is falling for Said and Amer Hlehel as Jamal, one of the minders assigned to Said and Khaled and the film's true villain.
Debut director Hany Abu Assad doesn't use many filmmaking tricks, much of the film has the look of a documentary and that ring of truth extends to everything in the film. It's impossible to know how close Assad gets to the truth but this feels all too real.
So why not a top grade? Well I guessed the ending. Not that unusual but I guessed almost every detail by the middle of the film (and by the start of the last scene I'd even guessed exactly what the final shot would be). This predictability does make Paradise Now a slightly lesser film than it might otherwise have been but it is still pretty extraordinary and very highly recommended.
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Thoughtful treatment of a tricky subjectBy mj55 (171 reviews) , 03 Dec 2013Suicide bombers, eh? Must be crazy those guys. This film shows how attitudes and personalities can change when faced with extreme circumstances. Although the men had volunteered for the duty at some time in the past it was still a shock when they were 'chosen'. Indoctrination - political and religious - plus an overwhelming sense of injustice at the hand of the 'occupiers' are what drives the young men to this extreme act. The film is slow moving and thoughtful, focusing largely on the emotional impact of the mission on the two men and those closest to them.
Virgins? What virgins?By NunkyTed (29 reviews) , 22 Sep 2013Hell on Earth now more like. A thought-provoking film seen through the eyes of those willing to commit indiscriminate murder in the mistaken belief that it will solve anything. Another mistaken belief is that a bevy of 72 virgins await such 'martyrs' in Paradise. The word 'virgins' is a mistranslation of 'white raisins of crystal clarity' so even if there is an after-life [and assuming murderers are allowed in] the only reward a suicide bomber can hope to receive is a handful of dried fruit.
Paradise UnresolvedBy Cato (772 reviews) from Lydbury North , 25 Jul 2013Very good thriller with an important subject that's not really had a lot of coverage in film history, the Palestinian side of the Arab-Israeli confrontation. The action is superbly tense as two young men are chosen to enter Jerusalem from the West Bank and detonate suicide bombs. What follows is a slightly farcical scenario of indecisive action and slip ups, but the seriousness of the theme is never compromised and the resolution is open ended. A fine thriller, extremely well directed and acted.
the anti Four LionsBy filmamateur (104 reviews) , 18 Jun 2013a very good expose of a certain kind of belief that is not often filmed, the slightest change of circumstance can change so many lives.. I think that one is an essential viewing
REALLY BORING!!!!By a customer , 21 Dec 2012Boring beyond words just talk, talk, talk nothing happening more talking nothing happening yawn and eventually ejected the DVD after the longest 30 minutes of my life
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