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Shadows in Paradise

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Original title
Varjoja paratiisissa
Running time
76 min.
Finland Finland
Aki Kaurismäki
Timo Salminen
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Villealfa Filmproductions
Comedy. Drama. Romance | Romantic Comedy
Synopsis / Plot
Aki Kaurismäki’s austere and oddly moving third feature – the first instalment in a “Proletarian Trilogy” that also includes Ariel and The Match Factory Girl — is a moody, melancholic, miserabilist romantic comedy that features favourite male and female leads Matti Pellonpää and Kati Outinen in fine iconic form. He’s a sad-sack garbage man; she’s a luckless cashier. The hopeless, hemming-and-hawing romance between these two members of the walking wounded runs its sputtering, inarticulate course against a backdrop of drab supermarkets, inexpensive hotels and bingo halls – and, in true, generous Kaurismäki fashion, actually manages to move towards hope and optimism (and Estonia).
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