Outfest: Our Paradise
By Eddie Shapiro
No one likes getting older but, boy, Vassili really doesn’t like getting older. And who can blame him? As writer-director Gaël Morel explains it: The Parisians may like their wine and cheese aged, but not their hustlers. So, as the protagonist of Our Paradise, Vassili decides he doesn’t like the Parisians and before you know it, he’s killing them.
He tries to capture youth by partnering with the beautiful Angelo, but as Angelo is favored Vassili’s rage (and bloodlust) grows. It’s an ugly story (as most stories about sociopaths are) but thanks to Morel’s exquisite direction, it’s never less than fascinating.
Excellent performances from Stephane Rideau, Dimitri Dudaine, and Beatrice Dalle (Betty Blue) also keep the movie from ever veering into camp or melodrama. Like Bonnie and Clyde or Natural Born Killers, the characters in Our Paradise are unforgiveable yet remain totally compelling—and even moving. But let’s face it: Even unspeakable violence is more palatable when it’s in French.
Watch the trailer below