Though it would be hard not to characterise Brynych's film as grim, Transport from Paradise does inject both some darkly satirical notes into proceedings and well as some stylistic flourishes. The notion of the setting as some kind of utopian ghetto is sent up with jaunty music and the well- behaved citizens duly play their contented parts for a German film crew. The first explicit sense of the masked terror comes when the chairman of Jewish council refuses to sign the list of names due for the next transport because he knows about the gas chambers waiting at its destination. Brynych also utilises the mundane to signify the atrocious, particularly in a standout sequence amongst a labyrinth whose walls are made from discarded suitcases.
Taken from each new arrival and stacked in a disused warehouse they form a disorientating and almost Kafka-esque backdrop whilst serving as a sobering reminder both of the death at the end of the tracks, and the cold consideration of the inhabitants of Theresienstadt as merely numbers. Although it never quite scales the artistic heights of Jan Němec's Diamonds of the Night (1964) or Juraj Herz's stunning work The Cremator (1969), Transport from Paradise offers another interesting look at Czechoslovakia's wartime history and is another worthwhile home entertainment release from the ever-consistent Second Run.