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Shadows in Paradise (1986)
"Varjoja paratiisissa" (original title)

7.6
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Ratings: 7.6/10 from 2,688 users  
Reviews: 15 user | 22 critic

An episode in the life of Nikander, a garbage man, involving the death of a coworker, a love affair and much more.

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Title: Shadows in Paradise (1986)

Shadows in Paradise (1986) on IMDb 7.6/10

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Matti Pellonpää ...
Nikander
...
Sakari Kuosmanen ...
Esko Nikkari ...
Co-worker (työkaveri)
Kylli Köngäs ...
Ilona's Girlfriend (ystävätär)
Pekka Laiho ...
Shop Steward (myymälänhoitaja)
Jukka-Pekka Palo ...
Third Man (kolmasmies)
Svante Korkiakoski ...
Police (poliisi)
Mari Rantasila ...
Nikander's Sister (Nikanderin sisar)
Safka Pekkonen ...
Pianist (pianisti) (as Safka)
Antti Ortamo ...
2nd pianist (pianisti II)
Mato Valtonen ...
Pelle (as Markku Valtonen)
Sakke Järvenpää ...
Staffan (as Sakari Järvenpää)
Ulla Kuosmanen ...
Melartin's wife (Melartinin vaimo)
Neka Haapanen ...
Cook (kokki)
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Storyline

Only connect. In gray, class-conscious Helsinki, Nikander is a stoic, solitary garbage man. Cigarettes, coffee, bingo games, and English lessons border his circumscribed life. There are few words, no smiles, and no laughter. Violence and the threat of violence seem close at hand. Ilona, a supermarket clerk who frequently loses her job, bandages Nikander's hand one evening; later he gets her out of a jam, and they begin an on-again off-again relationship. "Why do I keep losing?," Nikander asks his co-worker, Melartin, a man Nikander met in jail and helped get a job. Can he break his losing streak? Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Romance

Certificate:

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Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

Language:

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Release Date:

17 October 1986 (Finland)  »

Also Known As:

Shadows in Paradise  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Towards the end, there's a scene where Nikander's friend talks about a problematic fellow worker named Mikkonen. Matti Pellonpää, who plays Nikander here, would later play Mikkonen in Ariel (1988), the second part of the Proletariat trilogy directed by Aki Kaurismäki. See more »

Goofs

When Nikander and Ilona leave the gas station and ride down the road, they pass a white car. The white car is standing still in the middle of the road. Presumably they drove so fast that they passed the white car, but it stands still. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Nikander: Friday!
Co-worker: [co-worker is offering Nikander a drink] You want?
Nikander: I'm driving.
Co-worker: Listen, Nikander. We've been a team quite a while. But I've been doing this for 25 years. I'm getting tired and so is my heart.
Nikander: What's the matter with it?
Co-worker: What ever.
Co-worker: I've got an idea - my own company. Five trucks to start with...
Nikander: What does it end?
Co-worker: The sky is the limit. The state and the banks will back us. I know everything about this game, but I'm not going to die behind the wheel.
[...]
See more »


Soundtracks

Jungle Rock
Written by Hank Mitzell, James Bobo, Bill Collins and Ralph Simonton
Performed by Hank Mitzell
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User Reviews

 
Interesting, breezy and simple, but that's not really enough.
10 July 2013 | by (Suffolk, England) – See all my reviews

My first taste of Finnish director Aki Kaurismäki, I watched Shadows In Paradise shortly after finding out about it because it's so short and seemed to be sweet. Based on reputation and plot lines, Kaurismäki looked to be the Finnish Mike Leigh in his representation of working life, or perhaps anti-Mike Leigh with his minimalist dialogue. The film is good, but too slight to have a big impact. It's a very simple love story, similar to films like Badlands where a couple do wrong to be with each other, but not a lot of exciting events happen. It's well shot and the cinematography is great even if the editing isn't always the best. But it holds back on its characters far too much for me to be invested. Interesting breezy watch though.

7/10


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