"Metropolitan" Is Released
Metropolitan is the first film by director and screenwriter Whit Stillman.
It received an Oscar nomination for Best Original Screenplay.
Shot on location in Manhattan and Long Island, the movie depicts the lives of young, upper-class New Yorkers (or as one character attempts to rebrand them, the "urban haute bourgeoisie") during debutante ball season while home for winter break in their first year of college. Middle-class Princeton student Tom Townsend, an admirer of Fourier's socialism, observes this comedy of manners with an outsider's distance but eventually becomes deeply attached to the characters he meets.
The debut film from writer-director Whit Stillman etches a sophisticated comic portrait of New York debutante society at the twilight of the 1980s. Set during the Christmas season, the film is told from the vantage point of Tom Townsend (Edward Clements), a self-professed proletarian radical who stumbles into the social sphere of a group of well-off Upper East Side twentysomethings calling themselves the SFRP (or Sally Fowler Rat Pack, named in honor of a frequent party hostess). The group includes Nick (Christopher Eigeman), an acidic misanthrope; sweet-natured Jane Austen acolyte Audrey (Carolyn Farina); Charlie (Taylor Nichols), a tongue-tied bumbler secretly in love with Audrey; and femme fatale Cynthia (Isabel Gillies). Quickly, Tom, who comes from much more humble beginnings, finds himself caught in the middle of the group. Audrey even develops a crush on him, but Tom is still reeling from a broken relationship with renowned man-eater Serena (Elizabeth Thompson), a peripheral member of the SFRP. It all leads to a romantic climax at the Southampton vacation home of Nick's womanizing arch-enemy Rick von Sloneker (Will Kempe). ~ Jason Ankeny, All Movie Guide