A Fools Paradise

Feature documentary

A cinematic journey through South Africa: from Cape Town to the heart of South Africa, Amsterdam. To the towns whose ‘Dutch white’ names are about to be erased from the map. How does one deal with the past when having grown up in a racist country? And what will the future bring?  On my journey I encounter stories of land reform, student protests, xenophobia, poverty, crime….

  • 65 locations in 7 provinces of South Africa
  • 45 Days on the road
  • Driving 7000km
  • Filmed between December 2016 and October 2017
  • premiered Dutch Film Festival 2019

Social interest

During the journey the conflicting reality kicks in.
She questions, what has become of the dreams of this being the Century for Africa to rise?

Do the masses of the countries people now finally have jobs that were denied under the white minority rule? Do people have decent housing, and basic services, or are service deliveries failing, and power cuts become the norm as a small group of people of all races live in opulence?

What of the on-going and recently rekindled xenophobic violence, what is the route cause, and why would a the various tribes of black people of South Africa now take such violent measures against those more recent migrants from elsewhere in Africa who acted in solidarity in the past?

The filmmaker herself is confronted with the common ‘white persons’ fears: Why do I feel scared of being robbed when street kids wash my car; is this danger real or am I a racist? How do they see me? Can we overcome the mistrust in ‘the other’? Is that perhaps the reality of the filmmaker’s own journey to the place of her birth?

Displaced and torn between two homes, Saskia asks if she will ever be able to find a little plot of land to truly call her home?

Writer & Director
– Saskia Vredeveld
Producer – Pieter van Huijstee
Co producer – Marc Schwinges
Director of Photography – Nic Hofmeyr
Editor – Dorith Vinken NCE
Music – Paul M. Van Brugge DFC
Sound Recordist – Sibusiso Zulu
Sound Design – Mark Glynne
Voice Recording & Sound Editing – Tom Bijnen
Sound Mix – Mark Glynne & Tom Bijnen
Sound Postproduction Anthill Sound Design
Line Producers NL – Natasja Möhrs, Lotte Gerding
Production Manager SA – Nhlanhla Ndaba


A formal South African /Netherlands Co-Production, Broadcasters: NCRV,
The Netherlands & SABC, South Africa Dutch funding : (Mediafonds, Filmfonds, CoBo)
and South African (DTI SA Production and Co-Production Incentive, the National Film
and Video Foundation).       A Pieter van Hystee & Underdog Film Production

 87 minutes, 48 minutes TV Version