Esther Harris, a young woman praised for her virtue and devotion to Warren F. Vanderbilt's Prophetic Watchman Ministries, has been given the opportunity of a lifetime - to attend Vanderbilt's Kingdom Bible College and to marry Phillip Sawyer, the son of a minister and a Kingdom student being groomed for the ministry. When the fundamentalist Christian sect falls on hard times, Esther looks for employment at a local health food store to supplement the group's income. At the store, Esther gets a chance to share her faith with her new manager, Gabriel, a devout skeptic and preacher's kid, and his roommate, Mark, a college drop-out who finds Christian television to be great entertainment. Shot entirely on location in Southern Indiana and Austin, Texas, Paradise Recovered attempts a modern-day retelling of the parable of the Good Samaritan while addressing the important topics of faith, tolerance, and spiritual abuse in modern culture. Written by
A very enjoyable movie about a girl living in a very uber-cult-like Christian sect and what happens when she intersects with a more moderate to liberal world. In fact moderation is a good word for the film. It is about finding normalcy amongst so much information and so many influences. It is not a preachy movie, but it is about being OK to have something to believe in. It is funny and entertaining and the young star is adorable, Heather Wallis is like a younger Ellie Kemper. Dane Seth Hulbert plays Gabriel, a grocery store employee who becomes many things to Ester, He is the irritating sand in her oyster shell, as she is trained in belief and he is someone who chooses which thoughts to think. Oliver Luke plays Mark, Gabriel's friend and roommate. The sort of second banana that you would find in Jack Black, but to the films credit the funny and entertaining moments are well balanced between the three main characters. The movie has been accepted to 17 film festivals, which says something about it's attraction to a fairly wide audience. I saw it at the Idyllwild Film Festival and it was well received and I really enjoyed it.
8 of 11 people found this review helpful.
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