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Paradise Recovered


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Editorial Reviews

Esther, a young woman praised for her virtue and devotion, has been given the opportunity of a lifetime. When her fundamentalist Christian sect falls on hard times, Esther finds employment at a local health food store to supplement the group's income. At the store, Esther gets a chance to share her faith with her new manager, Gabriel, a devout skeptic and preacher's kid. The friendship with Gabriel helps Esther determine her human worth while helping to reframe her faith in a whole new light. Paradise Recovered attempts a modern-day retelling of the parable of the Good Samaritan while addressing hard questions involving faith, tolerance and spiritual abuse in modern culture.

Special Features

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Product Details

  • Actors: Oliver Luke, Heather Del Rio
  • Directors: Storme Wood
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.66:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: Unrated
  • Studio: MONARCH HOME VIDEO
  • DVD Release Date: April 24, 2012
  • Run Time: 95 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (29 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0076L0RZY
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #108,043 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
5 star
83%
4 star
10%
3 star
0%
2 star
7%
1 star
0%
See all 29 customer reviews
Its not very often now a days to get a movie with great dialogue excellently written story and heart.
The1andonly
Her courage to get a job outside the church started her journey with a "free spirited" young man who showed her true love isn't about religion and God is about love.
Diana Mcmanus
If you always feel guilty, ashamed, or like you can never please God, this movie will show you the reason.
Anna

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

24 of 26 people found the following review helpful By TF Fixer on February 16, 2012
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
This independent film represents a call to awareness of the religious abuse that has become such a common scene on the American religious right landscape. The film is an exercise in contrasts - contrasts that Esther must experience in order to recover paradise for herself. Two young men, Gabriel and Philip, are presented to Esther as choices for love. Philip, the malingering convert, appears to understand the problems with his church, but is willing to play the game for his gain - sexual and financial. Gabe stands as an agnostic, who really seems to believe in God, who proclaims his disdain for the trappings of organized religion, but who stands upon his beliefs, ambiguous as they are even to him. But then there are two fathers. Both just as firm in their belief in organized religion, both are pastors. Philip's father uses his position to control others. He does not care for the souls, only for his own power. Gabe's father gets it. He believes in God and organized religion. He stands firm in his own faith and will not apologize for that faith. But - and this is important - his confidence is so strong that he has no need to coerce, force, abuse others into the fold. Gabe's father understands the freedom that Christ affords. His is no legalistic faith and he can be proud of his son for being an agnostic, but living the love of Christ in a real sense.

This film is poignant because it brings into focus the problem of the social gospel. The extreme religious right condemns the many churches for their focuses on doing unto others as we would have others do unto us, calling those of us who believe living Christ's love "the failure of the social gospel.
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Tom Provost on February 14, 2012
Format: DVD
To be upfront, I know the filmmakers of "Paradise Recovered" ... I stand by my review, however and would not be writing this unless I firmly believed what I am about to write: "Paradise" is a beautifully done movie about a young woman's spiritual journey and maturation. If you are like me, that description initially might be squirm inducing. However, the movie is also a warm and tender romance and is often quite funny. This is not your typical indie drama. It is at times a surprising story about spirituality and grace, particularly given the hero of the movie is an atheist who comes to the aid of a Christian going through a crisis of faith. The acting by the two leads is splendid, they are a pleasure to watch, as are many of the supporting performances. The direction is sensitive and spot on. 'Paradise' is a lovely, entertaining movie with some complex ideas thoughtfully and honestly addressed. This is well worth your time.
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Bubble Bunny on March 22, 2012
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I saw the film at the Indianapolis Heartland Film Festival. As a survivor of a christianized cult, I found myself riding an emotional rollercoaster through this film. Watching Esther go through a confident blind acceptance that they way she had been taught was the only right way, through the betrayal that she experienced and finally coming to a place where she understood that her faith to be her own personal journey, not one designed by a self serving huckster was absolutely fantastic.

It's very difficult to portray this type of transition in the short time of a film, but these film makers have managed to do a bang up job. The actors all handled their roles with beautiful expressiveness.

It may be a little challenging for some who feel that negative humor (mild though it is in this film) about religion is off limits. But it is just another way of dealing with the ugly side of cults that keeps things from becoming too heavy handed and preachy. If you find yourself in this category, stick to it, because Esther's choice in the end makes it worthwhile.

No single voice will be able to be the complete answer to the issue of religious abuse, but the one brought to the table by this film is definitely one of the ones to listen to.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By doc on February 14, 2012
Format: DVD
Winner of the Dead Center Film Festival, Paradise Recovered is one of the best indie films I've seen. (actually....better than most major studio films I've seen lately) It is the story of a young woman caught up in a Christian cult who discovers what she believes and is taught by the cult, is not what the leadership of the cult lives out. In a delightfully light, humorous manner the movie presents the recapture of her own freedom and grace while she forms a relationship with a young man questioning his own spiritual beliefs and heritage. Wonderfully acted and amazingly well directed Paradise Recovered should have been the indie film of the year.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By KELLY AND NANCY on May 14, 2012
Format: Amazon Instant Video Verified Purchase
i also was in a christian church that was extreme and legalistic w/ much false indoctrination. It has been over 30 years and I am still being deprogrammed. God is still breaking me free from mindsets that went in deep! It has been quite a journey but I am slowly but surely getting rooted in the real gospel and the grace of God in Christ. This sort of false teaching , brainwashing, church abuse is still around in many forms. A great, very enjoyable movie. Quality!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By The1andonly on February 16, 2012
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I have seen this movie multiple times and it only gets better. I cannot wait for it to be available. Its not very often now a days to get a movie with great dialogue excellently written story and heart. Trust me, this movie has it all, and has earned every award it has won and will win. I really cannot think of a single bad thing about this movie. LOVED IT!!! Its a must own.
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