Whit Stillman’s seminal comedy of manners introduced audiences to the “UHBs” (urban haute bourgeoisie), those mordantly ironic socialites too highbrow for their own good, and in the process brought a class-conscious verbal flair to 1990s independent cinema. Home on winter break during the debutante season, middle-class Princeton student Tom (Edward Clements) falls in with the “Sally Fowler Rat Pack,” a group of Upper East Side friends named for the girl (Dylan Hundley) whose apartment they use for after-hours parties. As naif Tom is accepted into the group, he becomes smitten with Audrey (Carolyn Farina) while struggling with his feelings for his ex Serena (Elizabeth Thompson), and batting declarations of grandeur from conservative Charlie (Taylor Nichols) and dandy Nick (Stillman axiom Chris Eigeman). Stillman’s worldview is wryly detailed and intimate, with clear affection for his characters. The Film Society is proud to celebrate the 25th anniversary of Stillman’s unabashedly literary (and recently restored!) debut, a film that spawned a host of imitators yet whose patent originality arrived fully formed. A New Directors/New Films 1990 selection. A Rialto Pictures release.

  • Directed By Whit Stillman
  • 1990
  • USA
  • DCP
  • 98 minutes