Movie Talk A Discussion area for everything movie related including films In The Theaters

The Whit Stillman appreciation thread

Old 04-10-06, 02:50 PM
  #1  
DVD Talk Hall of Fame
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Chicago
Posts: 8,145
Whit Stillman movies...

What do you think of this guy's movies? I was hooked by "Metropolitan" when it was first released. "Barcelona" is what really sold me on him, and it remains a favorite of mine. Pathetically, I still haven't seen "Last Days of Disco"...

As Ian Hendry might say, the appeal of these movies is selective. On the surface, the films consist basically of a bunch of good looking white-collar types trading over-analysed observations and arch quips in opulent surroundings. Like a good PG Wodehouse book, what makes them work is the subtle sarcasm and irony inherent in every scene. Also, his favorites Taylor Nichols and Chris Eigeman are two actors with terrific timing and great style.

The movies remind me a little of Wes Anderson's stuff or a good Belle and Sebastian song: they're a little over thought and a little precious but they know it and are willing to poke fun at themselves. If that sounds good to you, check them out.
Hiro11 is offline  
Old 04-10-06, 02:51 PM
  #2  
DVD Talk Legend
 
Join Date: Oct 2000
Location: Daytona Beach, FL
Posts: 21,879
Can't seem to find much of his stuff on DVD nowadays . (Like last Days of Disco at an affordable price)
Dr. DVD is offline  
Old 04-10-06, 03:06 PM
  #3  
DVD Talk Hall of Fame
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Chicago
Posts: 8,145
Originally Posted by Dr. DVD
Can't seem to find much of his stuff on DVD nowadays . (Like last Days of Disco at an affordable price)
Barcelona's about 18 bucks:
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00...v=glance&n=130

Metropolitan was just rereleased as an excellent Criterion disc.
Hiro11 is offline  
Old 04-16-06, 03:15 PM
  #4  
DVD Talk Limited Edition
 
Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: Philadelphia, PA
Posts: 5,919
I love Whit Stillman films.....
and would like to see more made, hopefully sooner rather than later.

I rented Barcelona back when it was first released on VHS when I was still in high school.....or maybe it was the summer after my first year of college, I really cannot remember......and I have been a fan ever since.

Bought Last Days of Disco when it was released on dvd. It's a shame it's been out of print for so long.

I still have yet to see Metropolitan. I waited for this to come out on dvd for a very very long time. It was nice that Criterion finally did it. Now I just need to find the time to sit down and watch it!
garmonbozia is offline  
Old 04-16-06, 10:18 PM
  #5  
DVD Talk Special Edition
 
joefrog91's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: Waco, TX
Posts: 1,628
I "discovered" Metroplitian on video when I was in college. I showed it to all my friends and everyone loved it. I thought about buying the Criterion DVD, but I just don't know if I could watch it again right now. It's a great movie, but it meant more to me back in college.
joefrog91 is offline  
Old 12-21-12, 02:11 PM
  #6  
DVD Talk Hall of Fame
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Chicago
Posts: 8,145
The Whit Stillman appreciation thread

Things that are great about Whit Stillman movies:

1. His films use a slightly mannered, stagey dialogue and acting style that remains somehow human and affecting. Wes Anderson learned this trick from watching Metropolitan and Barcelona. This gives the movies a sense of unreality that allows for some fascinatingly strange situations but still allows Stillman to get to some wise observations about human nature and society.

2. His precise observational style creates detailed and evocative worlds. Barcelona as an misunderstood and oblivious American expat, holding on to your college days in a slightly past its prime Studio 54, tuxedo rental shops and Manhattan deb parties in the late eighties. These are obscure situations that few people have ever experienced. They probably never actually existed at all. Regardless, because Stillman defines them so deeply, you get sucked in. Miyazaki movies often have the same power.

3. Chris Eigeman. He should be a huge star. Cynical, dry, often cruel and clueless but hugely charming, engaging, loyal and witty. You can't help but love the guy.

4. Beautiful, fluid cinematography and framing. From his first film, Stillman has shown he knows how to use a camera and set up a scene.

5. Stillman assumes his audience is smart and went to college. He assumes that you've read and understood a few 18th century novels. He never panders and never dumbs anything down. He assumes you'll pick up on subtle clues about a persons motivations or character. He assumes you'll get why a sophomoric reference to Brook Farm by a Harvard freshman wearing a tuxedo in a Park Avenue apartment is ridiculous and funny but at the same time understandable. This is refreshing.

Anyway, I love the guy's work. I hope he picks up his output in the next few years. I'm not holding my breath.
Hiro11 is offline  
Old 12-21-12, 02:20 PM
  #7  
DVD Talk Hero
 
Why So Blu?'s Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 29,007
Re: The Whit Stillman appreciation thread

I've only seen Last Days of Disco. I need to catch up with the rest of his stuff.
Why So Blu? is offline  
Old 12-21-12, 03:15 PM
  #8  
DVD Talk Platinum Edition
 
Join Date: Jul 1999
Location: Signal Hill, CA
Posts: 3,255
Re: The Whit Stillman appreciation thread

I've seen and liked all of his films and was wary about seeing Damsels In Distress since it received many lukewarm and poor reviews. I thoroughly enjoyed it, however, and felt the critics were too harsh concerning this film.

I would like to see Barcelona get a Blu ray conversion since that's the only film of his not on that format.

Originally Posted by Why So Blu? View Post
I've only seen Last Days of Disco. I need to catch up with the rest of his stuff.
There's not a heck of lot catching up to do since he's only made four films.
Franchot is offline  
Old 12-21-12, 04:22 PM
  #9  
DVD Talk Hero
 
Why So Blu?'s Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 29,007
Re: The Whit Stillman appreciation thread

I need to watch his other 3 films then.
Why So Blu? is offline  
Old 12-21-12, 06:00 PM
  #10  
DVD Talk Limited Edition
 
Ginwen's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: Kent, WA
Posts: 7,212
Re: The Whit Stillman appreciation thread

Originally Posted by Franchot View Post
I've seen and liked all of his films and was wary about seeing Damsels In Distress since it received many lukewarm and poor reviews. I thoroughly enjoyed it, however, and felt the critics were too harsh concerning this film.
I hated it at first (they were all so annoying) but it really grew on me and I ended up liking it a lot, so I'm glad I stuck it out. Of the rest, I am lukewarm on Last Days of Disco, but the other two are great, especially Barcelona which is one of my favorite movies ever.
Ginwen is offline  
Old 12-21-12, 08:26 PM
  #11  
DVD Talk Limited Edition
 
Hazel Motes's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Posts: 5,810
Re: The Whit Stillman appreciation thread

Love Whit Stillman.

I'd rank his films as follows:

1 The Last Days of Disco
2 Barcelona
3 Damsels In Distress
4 Metropolitan

I love all 4 of his films. Metropolitan is probably his most highly regarded film. Which might make my placement at number 4 seem like a slight. But it's really not. I really like it. I just like his other films more.
Hazel Motes is offline  
Old 12-23-12, 12:42 PM
  #12  
DVD Talk Hall of Fame
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Chicago
Posts: 8,145
Re: The Whit Stillman appreciation thread

I'd rank them:

1. Metropolitan
2. Barcelona
3. Last Days of Disco
4. Damsels in Distress

..which is crazy because Last Days of Disco is one of my favorite movies ever.
Hiro11 is offline  
Old 12-24-12, 01:59 AM
  #13  
Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 166
Re: The Whit Stillman appreciation thread

I can't help but think of Slim Whitman when I see his name.
DvdClon is offline  
Old 05-06-13, 12:40 PM
  #14  
DVD Talk Special Edition
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 1,132
Re: The Whit Stillman appreciation thread

I wrote a kinda negative review about Damsels in Distress before it hit theaters on my blog. Well, you guys may not believe this but Whit Stillman himself sat down with me to have a cup of coffee and talk about that review when he was in Miami a few months back. Here is part 1:

http://indieethos.wordpress.com/2013...s-in-distress/

I'll be posting part 2 tomorrow.
slowcloud is offline  
Old 05-06-13, 03:05 PM
  #15  
DVD Talk Legend
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Conducting miss-aisle drills and listening to their rock n roll
Posts: 16,034
Re: The Whit Stillman appreciation thread

Rick Von Slonecker is tall, rich, good-looking, stupid, dishonest, conceited, a bully, liar, drunk and thief, an egomaniac, and probably psychotic. In short, highly attractive to women.
Mabuse is offline  
Old 05-07-13, 09:08 AM
  #16  
DVD Talk Special Edition
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 1,132
Re: The Whit Stillman appreciation thread

And part 2 of my chat with Whit: http://indieethos.wordpress.com/2013...stress-part-2/
slowcloud is offline  
Old 10-28-13, 09:20 AM
  #17  
DVD Talk Hall of Fame
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Chicago
Posts: 8,145
Re: The Whit Stillman appreciation thread

Rewatched "Last Days of Disco" last night as I just noticed it's now on Netflix. What a great movie.
Hiro11 is offline  

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Archive Advertising Cookie Policy Privacy Statement Terms of Service

Copyright 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.