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Metroland (1999)

Christian Bale , Lee Ross , Philip Saville  |  R |  DVD
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Christian Bale, Lee Ross, Emily Watson, Elsa Zylberstein, John Wood
  • Directors: Philip Saville
  • Writers: Adrian Hodges, Julian Barnes
  • Producers: Adrian Hodges, Andrew Bendel, Antoine de Clermont-Tonnerre, Enrique Posner, François-Xavier Decraene
  • Format: Color, Full Screen, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround)
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: Universal Home Video
  • DVD Release Date: March 28, 2000
  • Run Time: 101 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: 0783240252
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #344,390 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Metroland" on IMDb

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Responsible Dream May 12, 2001
Format:VHS Tape
Christian Bale stars in "Metroland" as Chris, the early-middle-aged British suburbanite who is suddenly forced to dredge up all his bohemian, idealistic questionings from his early twenties when his old poet-buddy Tony (played by Phillip Saville) shows up. Emily Watson must have sparked many a crush among male cinema-goers, as Chris' mildly stodgy, yet keenly intelligent and feisty wife. Maybe it's just because I'm at a time in life (33) when someone like her is highly attractive, but, well, I thought she was a total babe. But beyond my reaction to her personally, the movie in general has the feel of a real slice of life. This is a set of occurences that many people can relate to, things that strike a real chord.
A few reviewers have commented that this movie lacked a real climax. What did you expect, car chases? Huge explosions? Some kind of cosmic epiphany, perhaps? I think the essence of the charm of this movie can be summed up by Chris' wife's simple obsevation that Tony, the rootless wanderer, is jealous of Chris. Romance and wild times are fine for a couple years when you're young. "Young" in this sense being a socially constructed state, after all -- many people in the world expect to be married and having children, or are busily preparing for it, in their very early twenties, instead of being out drinking and cavorting with Parisian babes. Still, if you are bourgeois enough not to have felt internal forces driving you to get married immediately after high school, as people in many neighborhoods do, after all -- then this movie will speak to you. The point of this movie is that sooner or later, at SOME point, be it at 18 or 30, everyone grows up, and maybe that fact is something other than the zenith of heinousness. I like this movie.
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Fairly interesting look at the married life. February 1, 2002
Some people assume that they will stay young and single forever. Sleeping around, partying, no familial responsibility...sounds pretty good right? "Metroland" takes a look at the life of Chris (Christian Bale). Chris is a married thirty-something living in a nice part of town and has a stable job. All seems content in his life. Then one day out of the blue, his old buddy Toni shows up. Toni tries to bring Chris back into his world of the single life filled with hot women, smoking pot and hanging out at parties. This causes Chris to take inventory of his current life and the decisions he has made. Some of this film is in flashback. It shows Chris as a 21 year old photographer in Paris, where he meets the carefree Annick (played wonderfully by Elsa Zylberstein). He eventually meets Marion (Emily Watson), who is another Brit like himself currently in France. She develops a very low-key bond with Chris and eventually they marry. Was it the right choice?
"Metroland" has a superb cast which plays their roles in just the right manner. Where this movie falters, however, is the mediocrity of the script. An introspective movie such as this should have much more powerful and memorable dialogue than it has. Hardly anything ever really comes out and grabs you. It just kinda rolls along and eventually reaches its conclusion. It could've been a great look at the choices we make and where it ends up placing us in life. As it is, however, it falls short of greatness...but it's still worth a look.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The grass is greener May 8, 2002
This is the first movie that I've seen that depicts a good marriage in a realistic way. Married people are not immune to wanting to have sex with other people, they just weigh those wants against the value of their marriage. This film takes a look at one man's quarter-life crisis spurred on by the arrival of his devil-may-care childhood buddy. It is an exhamination of what one has versus what he invisioned he would have, and a realization of whether or not he is happy. This film is a glimpse at life, not sappy or overly-dramatic, just good.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
Format:VHS Tape
This is a really great, moving film about a kid and his pal who dream about getting out of their bourgeois, suburban, establishment, English way of life. They grow up, and one of the friends, Toni, is living the crazy vagabond artist life. The other, Chris, is living the life he always dreaded as an adolescent. But the thing is, he's happy. He's got a lovely wife, a baby, steady job and nice home. When Toni comes back and sees his friends "complacent" life, he feels obligated to shake him out of it. This is a very thoughtful and entertaining movie that makes you think: what really will make us happy is often what we resist the most.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars States of mind.. April 19, 2000
By I.M.
Barnes' quest in his novel does not necessarily revolve around "sexual boredom" as Marion puts it, or a trite middle-class, mid-life "self-crisis". It is a touching evaluation of a past, with its odds and ends, an appreciation of reminiscences that leads us to where we stand, where we exist and how we interact with others as well as ourselves. On the other hand, Saville's depiction appears rather judgemental. His view, unlike Barnes, polishes Chris' choice "to eat at the Ritz". We all feel, maybe sometimes desperately, the need to belong to someone, that warm intimacy, the comfort of loving safety. However, what Saville does not answer is the point that whether we have to be like Chris to admit this need, whether we constantly have to remember our "glorious"(!), youthful past to realize that life's slipping off our hands or whether being a "rolling stone" is always an alternative for the petite bourgeoisie attitude. But in overall, if you can keep yourself distant from Saville's perspective, the film is witty, entertaining & interestingly enjoyable. Maybe the only quote that really exceeds the novel's cynicism is that when Marion tells Chris "You're not that original". Watson is great as the "sterile" wife, always measured, very British. Zylberstein is purely awesome! . Do not expect the novel as it is, for it is deformed. But it's a sincere attempt to help us admit our simple needs like a cosy home, affection and even "settling down" no matter how "middle-class" they may appear to others.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars This is a great movie
This is one of my favorite Movies, great story, great cast. Glad I bought this. Thank you amazon for having this available to buy.
Published 6 months ago by Mike Petruska
5.0 out of 5 stars What a great movie!
Christian Bale is awesome in this movie!! He never ceases to amaze me!! This is a must bring home for all!!
Published 17 months ago by Cindy Ridlehoover
3.0 out of 5 stars Christian's American accent is better then his native land's accent....
Christian Bale plays a better American than he does a Brit. Stay American, Christian! Your the best "American" actor in our current time.
Published 18 months ago by Spartan88
4.0 out of 5 stars "Metroland"
Not a bad, almost unknown/forgoten film. C. Bale is really good in this.
E. Watson is good in this as well, their where just certain scenes where I didn't... Read more
Published 22 months ago by pawnshop
5.0 out of 5 stars Metroland
Great film. One of Christian Bale's earlier works. He's stunning in it. Great story. Interesting characters. I enjoyed this immensely!
Published on August 9, 2012 by dcbuddy
5.0 out of 5 stars difficult to find a copy on the market
must have for a the whole idea of the movie, but agree the story cld hv been more stronger.
Published on October 11, 2011 by elyse
4.0 out of 5 stars Review of Metroland
Mostly I see Christian Bale in American films with an American accent. Here he's in an English movie using his native English accent. Read more
Published on April 2, 2011 by Paul Kao
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfect Title!
This is one of Christian Bale's best movies and it was never boring from start to finish. This movie should have been played in the theatres here in the U.S.
Published on April 18, 2010 by Robert V. Bessellieu
5.0 out of 5 stars I Think I Relate More To This Movie Now Than I Would Have Not Long Ago
Based on Julian Barnes popular-under-the-radar novel, 1999's Metroland is an enjoyable, well-acted film that makes great use of its period and setting and finds depth in a plot... Read more
Published on April 30, 2009 by Dai-keag-ity
5.0 out of 5 stars Metroland
This movie was true to life of what most people go through in their lives. Everyday struggles tend to create problems at home and work and make one question the choices they have... Read more
Published on February 12, 2009 by Christine C. Heffner
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