Return to Paradise


Mixed or average reviews - based on 22 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 11 out of 22
  2. Negative: 3 out of 22

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Critic Reviews

  1. 88
    The director, Joseph Ruben ("The Stepfather," "Sleeping With the Enemy"), uses a kind of flat, logical storytelling that leads us inexorably toward his conclusions.
  2. New York Daily News
    Reviewed by: Dave Kehr
    Directed with great skill and intelligence by Joseph Ruben, Return to Paradise, is a rare thing among today's movies a drama of conscience. [14 Aug1 998, Pg.51]
  3. Return to Paradise is "Midnight Express" remade from the outside, as existential quandary. It has the moody, disquieting undertow of a true moral thriller.
  4. Reviewed by: David Edelstein
    Return to Paradise doesn't boast many surprises. It's straight-on, morally uncomplicated. Emotionally, though, it's dense and twisty -- and smashingly potent.
  5. None of the moral ramifications of this dilemma is avoided, and to the film’s credit the behavior of the American press seems more questionable than the machinations of third-world justice.
  6. 75
    The film's ending is a little unanticipated, and, although there are a few too many surprise revelations in the last 20 minutes, they all work reasonably well to enhance, rather than diminish, the central theme.
  7. A potential problem with the movie is that it can be a challenge watching people hand-wringing over moral decisions. But the acting is so good that it makes it worth sticking with during the slow patches.
  8. This movie has a first-rate script, and director Joseph Ruben ( "True Believer," "The Stepfather" ) knew exactly what to do with it.
  9. As returns go, Return To Paradise falls short of heavenly, but it does get to the stars -- at least three of them.
  10. 70
    Although there are a few other flaws in the film (flaws that will not be mentioned since it would give away major plot points) and the lack of character development is a major oversight by the filmmakers, Return to Paradise still manages to grip you until the fateful ending, an ending that is very powerful and must be witnessed to be believed.
  11. Despite solid performances from the leads, it comes shrouded in a heavy cloud of ethics-class complications that makes it feel like a "dilemma of the week" TV movie.

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