The Criterion Collection for years have been releasing the best versions of movies on DVD and Blue Ray. They are hands down the ultimate praise a film can receive,and while many claim the Oscar to be the ultimate recognition. Having the work and praise that goes into a Criterion edition. Shows that it was put together by film lovers for film lovers. This section is going to be dedicated to some of the great movies in this growing collection.
What I love best about movies is the different places I get to visit and the various types of people I get to meet. These are like mini vacations, because I only stay for a couple of hours and then I get to leave. A lot of my journeys have involved characters I would not want to live with. “Requiem For a Dream” did not make me want to become a drug addict, and “Full Metal Jacket” did not want to make me join the army. Still I found both of those movies to be very good because of the characters and situations in them. The same thing goes for “Metropolitan“. Almost every person in this is a rich upperclassman whom I have not a thing in common with. If I were to see a group of them in a corner somewhere, I would probably assume they were snobs, and laugh at them. Whit Stillman takes us inside their world, and even though their tastes in things are vastly different from mine. I found they have the same social problems when it comes to friendship and dating that most of us have.
One night at a ball a young gent named Tom(Edward Clements) meets up with a group of preppies(Hey they used the term so don’t think I’m just calling names). They get together each week and discuss topics like philosophy or works of great literature. Tom stays with the group even though he is not rich as the rest of them. One of them refers to him as a public transportation snob because he always takes the bus instead of cabs. In the group a young girl named Audrey(Carolyn Farina) gets a crush on Tom, but he is in love with an ex girlfriend named Serena(Ellia Thompson). She is in fact in love with a guy named Rick(Will Kempe) who is attracted to Audrey . What follows next is a series of adventures where hearts are broken, unlikely friendships are formed, and love eventually finds it way in the end.
The dialoug from Whit Stillman is very good and was very deserving of an Oscar nomination for best original screenplay. These characters may speak about things that would not interest many of us. However the way they interact with each other is the same way all social groups interact. You could put a group of metal heads next to a group of film buffs and if you really looked closely they would have a lot more in common then just their interests. All of the actors in this do a really good job and while I am indifferent to their characteristics. I found them very fascinating to watch. It was almost like studying a new type of species out in their natural habitat, upper class New York.
This is the first part of a trilogy by Stillman including “Barcelona” and “Last Days of Disco“. I’m a huge fan of “..Disco” but have not seen the other one yet. I’m reminded of a quote by the great Bugs Bunny when he said “It’s a nice place to visit, but I wouldn’t want to live there.” That is how I feel about “Metropolitan”
- Restored high-definition digital transfer, supervised by director Whit Stillman and cinematographer John Thomas, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray edition
- Audio commentary by Stillman, editor Christopher Tellefsen, and actors Christopher Eigeman and Taylor Nichols
- Rare outtakes and alternate casting, with commentary by Stillman
- PLUS: An essay by critic Luc Sante