Leningrad in the late 1970s. Bored teenagers kill time drinking vodka to stave off the dread of being drafted to Afghanistan. Misha meets Galia, a girl from a long line of Russian aristocrats who have survived by lying low. These two wounded angels choose to do the impossible thing: to dare to love each other and live for themselves. Defying irresponsible, alcoholic adults, they struggle with an energy born of despair to escape from a life of quick fixes, booze and compromises.
"Angels in Paradise" is the answer to the questions I asked myself when my first son, Antoine, was born in Paris: Why am I living in France? Why do I have a French son? Why does one leave the country of one's birth?
"This film is a way of taking revenge on my youth. I didn't come to France because I wanted to; I came to stay alive and not be killed in Afghanistan. It's a destructive revenge, but it's also creative. It is in filmic form because pictures were the only way in which I could formulate the answers. I felt a deep need to pin down the official lie that surrounded me, the total despair that ruled everything. In a word, that whole period was gray. Not black but gray, which is much more soul-destroying. Colorless and odorless.
(Evgueni Lounguine, Director)