We’re All Nostalgic for Metropolitan’s Chatty Afterparty on Its 30th Anniversary, Jessica Jacolbe November 24, 2020 for Paste Magazine.
The holidays are often the best time of year to watch Whit Stillman films. Every December, the Downtown Manhattan theater Metrograph would screen a holiday double feature with the director introducing Metropolitan and Last Days of Disco. This year, Metropolitan, Stillman’s satire of the New York City debutante scene—his fantasy of the upper middle class, waxing poetic on the empty conversations in Upper East Side luxury apartments—turns 30 years old. The film takes place during winter break, the chaotic month between semesters which presents a “no man’s land” of social life. Classmates return home, sometimes alone. Others may stay in the city, also alone. The period between Christmas and New Year’s transforms New York City into a shell of itself. In 2020, life in isolation and quarantine can feel like an eternal winter break.