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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Totally disconnectedBy JustKewl (105 reviews) from Ipswich , 23 Oct 2009This film was not at all good to be honest. The subject matter was a tough one. Would've been interesting but the subtles are so poor! Who engineered the subtles shouldn't be allowed to continue. They were overly bold so that the letters in some words blended together, making reading very uncomfortable. Therefor, my drifted too easily while watching and that's the last thing that should happen when watching. I felt disconnected from the entire film and charactors as a result. The film seemed too slow and too much of the film centred on the build up to the bombing. A waste to be honest.... a waste of film.
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Great filmBy a customer from OXON , 13 Sep 2009Thought provoking and well acted. I was hooked within the first 10-20 minutes and really enjoyed it. Recommended
thoughtful movieBy a customer from St. Ives , 08 May 2009All lean, no fat storytelling about a complex subject matter. Offers no easy 'Hollywood' solutions. Keeps you hooked till the very end. This film will stay with you for a long time after.
paradise nowBy ranawi (2 reviews) from Manchester , 06 Mar 2009this is a really good film, at times it is slightly repetitive and you just wish some of the characters would say someting different, but it is not as predictable as i imagined. for anyone who knows nothing about the palestinian issue this is a great introduction, the lighting and camera shots are great giving it the effect of a real art house movie. the acting is subtle and underrated making it natural and convincing. i just wish we knew a little more about the characters as the movie is very short, but at least you dont have time to get bored
Heaven Can WaitBy InspectorSands (209 reviews) from London , 18 Feb 2009This is about two Palastenian lads who are appointed suicide bombers when their turn comes up. The film follows their day to day routine in the run up, where they have to break across the border and into Israel. Oddly, the photography is so good and there's a real Bondian feel about it from the beginning. There's even a True Lies moment with the recording of the 'death to infidels' speech on the video camera.
The last 15 mins or so of the film taper off a bit and aren't very convincing, but I highly recommend it nonetheless. It treats the audience with respect.