Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBBB.5.
USA, 1990. Westerly Films, Allagash Films, Westerly Film. Screenplay by Whit Stillman. Cinematography by John Thomas. Produced by Whit Stillman. Music by Tom Judson, Mark Suozzo. Costume Design by Mary Jane Fort. Film Editing by Christopher Tellefsen.
Whit Stillman took the art house by storm with this witty and intelligent social drama. It takes place in the world of New York debutantes of the 1970s (though attempts at period authenticity are lax), with a group of socialites gossiping about each other for two hours. The protagonist of the story is a less-than-wealthy young man who is anxious to be accepted by the in-crowd, though their backstabbing personalities eventually make him grow weary and lose his desperation to be so readily accepted. You wouldn’t think a movie that is nothing but straight dialogue would be so entertaining, but this one is. Stillman has yet to top his debut.
The Criterion Collection: #326
Academy Award Nomination: Best Original Screenplay