Paradise Road (1997)

R  |   |  Drama, History, War  |  11 April 1997 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.8/10 from 4,032 users   Metascore: 48/100
Reviews: 51 user | 31 critic | 18 from

Fact-based recounting of a group of women who are imprisoned on the island of Sumatra by the Japanese during World War II and used music as a relief to their misery.



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Susan Macarthy
Sister Wilhelminia (as Johanna Ter Steege)
Elizabeth Spriggs ...
Pamela Rabe ...
David Chung ...
Penne Hackforth-Jones ...


The group of women from different countries and social levels are prisoners in a Japanese POW camp, where one of them, Adrienne, who is a graduate of the Royal Academy of Music, organizes a vocal band in spite of their guards resistance. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Drama | History | War

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for prisoner of war brutality and violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






| | |

Release Date:

11 April 1997 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Estrada do Paraíso  »

Box Office


$16,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$62,518 (USA) (11 April 1997)


$1,921,471 (USA) (30 May 1997)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (FMC Library Print)

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The film refers to the singing prisoner of war women as a vocal orchestra rather than as a choir. See more »


Given that each of the women wore a single dress, day in and day out, in a tropical climate for three years straight, the fabric of their clothing would have disintegrated long before that was finally depicted in the film. Also, there's no way that the nuns would have been able to keep the white elements of their habits white, especially given the scarcity of soap. See more »


Officer: [dancing] You're so beautiful, Rosemary.
Rosemary Leighton-Jones: So are you.
Officer: You can't say that, can you? Men aren't... I am not beautiful.
Rosemary Leighton-Jones: Yes, you are.
See more »


References Playing for Time (1980) See more »


The Lullaby of Itsuki
Performed by Clyde Kusatsu
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User Reviews

An amazing film which deserves to be recognized
10 January 2001 | by (London, England) – See all my reviews

The film was both moving and heart warming. It shows the unbelievable story of a group of women surviving a PoW camp against all the odds. I found it hard to believe that anyone was made to live in the conditions they were put in and live to tell the story. The acting was excellent and i don't think this film has got the praise it deserves. It is made even more moving by the fact it is based on a true story.

7 of 9 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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