Conflict Test What Is Truly Important: Paradise Road

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Conflict allows us to reflect on which is important in our lives. THE AGE
Paradise Road (1997)
Encountering conflict is an inevitable facet of human existence, which by definition is the opposition of intangible entities. From conflict individuals and societies may be challenged and furthered in terms of social and moral values and beliefs, as each comes to encounter the underlying and intangible elements of conflict and through this, humanity. Based on the testimony of survivors, Bruce Beresford’s feature film Paradise Road highlights the potential of conflict to catalyse the revaluation of an individual’s moral compass, the way in which one lives and the values that are important to their existence to be realised. The film portrays the story of a group of women who, having survived the bombing and sinking of their ship by the Japanese during their evacuation of Singapore, think that the “worst is over”, but are yet to find that the toughest times are to come after their capture by the Japanese. It is in these hellish prison camps where they face their harshest test of courage and survival, and show us their incredible will to live and what is really important – friendship, community spirit, and surprising attributes of beauty. When an individual, in the face of conflict, possesses the self-awareness to understand what conflict may teach them about themselves, then encounters with conflict may elicit what is truly important. The central character, Adrienne Pargiter, responds to the tragedy of Wing’s death, through her belief in the healing power of music and her desire to draw the women closer in a bid to unify. The women realise that the racial and class boundaries which divide them will only lead to conflict among each other, and the need for resolution of these differences if they are to survive. This act highlights to the importance of community, and through unification in the face of tribulation, humans are able to nourish hope and optimism amidst the...
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