A man in a permanent vegetative state is lying at the ‘Hernals Hospital of Eternal Life’ (formerly known as Etablissement Gschwandner, soon to reopen as REAKTOR, Geblergasse, Vienna’s 17th District), reliving in his dreams the events that led to his hospitalisation. His wife certainly had a hand in it. A few years back she disappeared from his life without trace, without explanation. Shortly before he was admitted to hospital she reappeared at his medical practice, accompanied by a child he wished was his own.
In his waking dreams, realities and memories of his hopes and dreams blend with dreams of realities without hopes.
As his condition deteriorates, his mother arranges to have him cryogenically frozen at the Cryonics Department (which, conveniently, adjoins the hospital).
However, his ex-wife has summoned a priest to conduct the sacrament of extreme unction. While a farewell ceremony is underway, she improvises a blood transfusion, giving her blood to the man.
While the priest is dispensing the last rites to the wrong body in the dissecting room next door, the woman bleeds to death in the operating theatre; but then the man awakes from his coma.
The man’s mother rejoices at the fact that her daughter-in-law is dead, someone she always rejected as inadequate. Later, with her son and her grandson, she goes to Vienna’s Prater amusement park, where the story first began.
English Title: Elysium Hernalsiense
Bonus materials: Finnish
Director: Bernhard Kammel
Writer: Bernhard Kammel
Stars: Enni Ojutkangas, Edmund Kingsley, Larisa Udovichenko, Christoph Fälbl, Jan Graveson
2017 33rd Warsaw Film Festival
2017 World Film Festival Montreal
2017 Blow-Up International Arthouse Filmfest
2017 Global Cinema Festival India