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1,605 Ratings


Directed by Whit Stillman
United States, 1990
Comedy, Drama, Romance


One of the great American independent films of the 1990s, writer-director Whit Stillman’s surprise hit Metropolitan is a sparkling comedic chronicle of a middle-class young man’s romantic misadventures among New York City’s debutante society.

Our take

Whit Stillman burst onto the American cinema scene with this ferociously funny look at the “urban haute bourgeoisie” in New York. With a distinct comic voice and authentic observations of human behaviour, Stillman established himself as one of the most promising breakthrough directors of the 90s.

Metropolitan Directed by Whit Stillman

Awards & Festivals

Cannes Film Festival

1990 | Directors' Fortnight

Academy Awards

1991 | Nominee: Best Writing, Screenplay Written Directly for the Screen

Locarno International Film Festival

1990 | Winner: Silver Leopard

Stillman’s film neither demolishes its pampered class nor indulges it in the manner of reactionary nostalgia like Downton Abbey. Metropolitan ends with three of its characters on a roadside, out of money, thumbing a ride, wiser and happier; it’s a film about the wealthy that an agrarian socialist need not object to. Above all, it’s a film that has lasted—changed, but lasted. It’s good to have it, and Whit Stillman, back. Yachting brokerage’s loss is cinema’s gain.
August 07, 2015
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Stillman would develop greater facility with the camera in later films (especially The Last Days Of Disco), but he’s never topped Metropolitan’s plethora of quotable lines, expertly delivered by a superb ensemble of unknowns (most of whom have stayed that way).
August 06, 2015
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[Stillman’s] debut, in the same mode but constraining itself entirely to manners, attractions, and subtle tinctures of class difference among a college-age but old-school group of Manhattan socialites, is at once his most inconsequential work, and his most fully serious. It’s also perhaps the great cinematic depiction of the wintry, nostalgic climate and heady leisure time of New York City over the Christmas holiday.
August 05, 2015
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