'Paradise' shot in Brooklyn New York in the Fredric
Olmstead designed, Prospect Park was shoot in summer
and autumn 08 with a small crew shooting HD video, 720p
and the sound recorded with a Sheps stereophonic
microphone and is 107 minutes long. The visual style both
verite and highly cinematic folds the actuality of the recording
environment and the film making into the very fabric and
story of the film.
Casting, writing and rehearsal of the project took over a year
before shooting. The ensemble of actors prepared with a
variety of movement and characterization exercises taking
cues from the experimental theatre work of Julian Beck and
Joseph Chaikin and their ideas of experimentation, the living
body and the immediacy of the senses.
The film starts with Solange, a professor in history and theatre
arts at NYU. She brings her class to the park for her closing
talk on ‘fiction and the real’. Soon the class is folded into a
fiction about life, love, time, politics, mathematics and more,
all the while excavating the inner psyche of its characters.
As Solange brings her dream of ‘Paradise’ into being: a
deconstruction of the messianic, sugar-coated Matrix fantasy,
characters become authors who create characters who
become authors: a Hoffmannesque nesting of consciousnesses
begins. Solange, a novelist, dreams her family into the future,
conjures her characters into the present, and leaves them
haunted by an unremembered past. She renames her children
Jules and Juliet, makes them lovers, siblings who like to
pretend that they are pretending to be sister and brother, and
who keep love and memory alive by impersonating each
other. Her husband Roman, haunted by a chill presentiment
of that first, malevolent thriller, finds himself receding into an
infinity of other lives, as if there were no death only dissolving.