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While wracking my brain for an unusual but exceptional DVD choice this week for those of you about ready to head into Christmas vacation, I stumbled across Slate’s list of overlooked holiday movies and was delighted to find one of my favorite indie movies of all time. I can’t imagine how I had forgotten that the high society coming of age drama “Metropolitan” took place over Christmas vacation, making it the perfect choice for an unlikely bit of holiday cheer.


“Metropolitan” follows a group of elite Upper East Siders through their New York City Christmas break – which also happens to be debutante season. Tom, a nice guy of ordinary means who lives on the West side of Manhattan tries–uneasily–to join their circle. The entire movie is like a much smarter, more eloquent version of “Gossip Girl” and is not nearly so raunchy. I can’t say holiday spirit plays a big part in the story line, but it certainly gives atmosphere to the already lush Manhattan backdrop that gives you an inside look at the privileged few.
However, the best reason to watch this film is for the delicate and timeless way the story portrays the restless longings and searching of a generation. While this movie is perhaps in some ways a mild satire of the yuppified late 80s, many of the moral dilemmas these characters face are true today. No judgments are made, no big revelations occur, and yet somehow by the end of the story, I always feel like there is a societal indictment of postmodern secular ideals just the same.
Okay, that might not sound like lighthearted holiday viewing, but these characters are touching in their own ways and create an interesting prism to look at our own harried Christmas schedules filled with too many thing that may not be so important after all.

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