PARADISE - A feature film trilogy by Ulrich Seidl

Co-producer Germany: TAT-Film (Christine Ruppert)  |  Co-producer France: Co-Production Office (Philippe Bober)  |  World Sales: Co-Production Office (Philippe Bober)  |  Director: Ulrich Seidl  |  Script: Ulrich Seidl, Veronika Franz  |  Principal Photography October 2009 – Fall 2011


On the beaches of Kenya they're known as Sugar Mamas: European women to whom black beach boys offer sex to earn a living. Teresa, a 50-year-old Austrian from Vienna and the mother of a daughter entering puberty, travels as a sex tourist to this vacation paradise in search of love. She goes from one beach boy to the next, from one disappointment to the next. On the beaches of Kenya love is a business.

Through the power of its images, emotions and performances, "PARADISE: Love" tells of sex tourism, older women and young men, the market value of sexuality, the power of skin color, Europe and Africa, and the exploited, who have no choice but to victimize other victims.

Ulrich Seidl's film is the opener in a trilogy about three women in one family who take separate vacations: one as a sex tourist, another as a Catholic missionary (PARADISE: Faith) and the third at a diet camp for teenagers (PARADISE: Hope.) Three films, three women, three stories of longing.


Ulrich Seidl takes a look at what it means to carry the cross in Austria. His most simple yet nonetheless most complicated film shows a woman who spends her vacation proselytizing with statues of the Madonna until her husband, a Muslim, comes back from Egypt. They sing, they pray and they fight. "PARADISE: Faith" is a filmic Pieta with the stations of the cross depicting a marriage.


The third story "PARADISE: Hope" shows a young woman, overweight and curious. While her mother goes to Kenya, she spends her holidays at a dietary camp somewhere at the Semmering. There she falls in love with the 40 years older doctor. She loves him with the exclusiveness of a first love. He however fights it - knowing that this cannot happen.

Ulrich Seidl, born 1952, lives in Vienna. He is the director of numerous award-winning documentaries such as Good News (1990), Animal Love (1994) and Models (1998). His first theatrical feature Dog Days won the Grand Jury Special Prize at the 2001 Venice Film Festival. Import Export, the first film that Ulrich Seidl also produced, premiered in competition at the 2007 Cannes film festival.