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PARADISE ON EARTH A film by Hans Madej

Director  Hans Madej

Author  Hans Madej & Fedor Mosnak, Günter Hablik

Director of Photography  Hans Madej

Sound Mixer  Fedor Mosnak

Editor  Günter Hablik

Projekt Development  Elisabeth Daigfuss

Music  Annette Focks

Assistant Director  Iza Dabrowska

Production Manager  Ira Sircar

Supervising Producer  Björn Jensen

Co-Producer  Doris Hepp (ZDF/ARTE)

Producer Jörg Bundschuh

A Kick Film production in coproduction with ZDF/ARTE

Photographer Hans Madej discovers a virtually deserted village in eastern Poland, where he meets a group of people who have been living out the Bible as if it were a screenplay for existence. During the 1930s, they had been assigned biblical roles by a farmer prophet named Eliasz, who commanded that they build the future world capital in a nearby forest clearing. This was to be the official location of paradise on earth. Just a few years later, Eliasz disappeared without a trace. For the villagers, he remained the embodiment of hope, something to sustain them through more than sixty years of revolution, war and its aftereffects. The photographer’s intrepid quest to find Eliasz takes him from the quiet Polish village all the way to Siberia’s Stalinist work camps. Mesmerizing images take us into a strange, unknown world where biblical myth and reality form a seamless unity. The destiny of these villagers, who live far from what we know as modern life, could almost be seen a parable for the meaning of life.

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