Exiles in Paradise (2001)




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Two victims of political repression form a valuable friendship in a free but unfriendly land in this independent drama. Dimitri Ranevsky (Dimitri Boudrine) is an actor and playwright from the Soviet Union, who, tired of the political and cultural repression of his homeland, has come to Canada to start his life over again. However, dealing with the red tape of Canada's immigration and naturalization departments proves to be nearly as maddening as the bureaucracy he left behind; working off the books for a pawnbroker and facing possible deportation, Dimitri is nearing the end of his rope. One day, Ai Ling Huang (Benita Ha) comes into the pawn shop, hoping to get some money for a watch. Dimitri learns that Ai Ling is a fellow political exile; born in China, Ai Ling was jailed for daring to freely express her religious beliefs, and came to Canada under the agreement that attorney Steve Jeffries (J.R. Bourne) would marry her so she could stay in the country. However, Steve has changed his mind, and now Ai Ling is also fighting deportation. Dimitri and Ai Ling become friends, and after reading his plays, she encourages Steve to help Dimitri stay in Canada so he can continue to pursue his muse in a free land. Exiles in Paradise was the first feature from director and screenwriter Wesley Lowe. ~ Mark Deming, Rovi


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