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Quiet City & Dance Party, USA (2007)

Erin Fisher , Cris Lankenau , Aaron Katz  |  Unrated |  DVD
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

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Quiet City & Dance Party, USA + Mutual Appreciation + Nights and Weekends
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Product Details

  • Actors: Erin Fisher, Cris Lankenau, Joe Swanberg, Anna Kavan, Cole Pennsinger
  • Directors: Aaron Katz
  • Format: NTSC, Anamorphic, Widescreen, Color, Digital Sound
  • Language: English
  • Region: All Regions
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1
  • Number of discs: 2
  • Rated: Unrated
  • Studio: Benten Films / Ryko Distribution
  • DVD Release Date: January 29, 2008
  • Run Time: 78 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #310,431 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Quiet City & Dance Party, USA" on IMDb

Special Features

  • Director and cast commentary on Quiet City and Dance Party, USA
  • Joe Swanberg's Quiet City
  • The Music of Quiet City
  • Footage from teh NYC premier of Quiet City
  • Alternative and extended scenes from Dance Party, USA with commentary
  • The Lunch Hour

Editorial Reviews


Beautiful! A fully realized work of mumblecore poetry. --Stephen Holden, THE NEW YORK TIMES

DANCE PARTY, USA is in my pantheon of coming-of-age movies. --Amy Taubin, FILM COMMENT

So pure and precise and honest that it takes on stature beyond its actual size. As a work of art, it makes a big noise indeed. --Shawn Levy, OREGONIAN

Product Description

Widely praised for his contemplative lyricism, character-driven style, and his "gift for naturalistic dialogue" (The Village Voice), writer-director Aaron Katz now stands at the vanguard of American cinema's new wave of forward-thinking independents.

In QUIET CITY, Katz's deceptively simple drama that has been called "a Terrence Malick film for the new lost generation" (The Austin Chronicle), we meet twentysomething Jamie (Erin Fisher) as she arrives in New York to visit a friend who never shows. On an empty subway platform, she crosses paths with a kindly stranger named Charlie (Cris Lankenau), and an unlikely connection is formed over the next 24 hours through city parks, abandoned apartments, and art galleries in the heart of industrial Brooklyn. Achingly sincere and shot with a painterly eye, Katz's approach is refreshingly devoid of romantic clichés.

Then in his impressionistic and tenderly heartbreaking debut, DANCE PARTY, USA -- hailed as "one of the best films of the year" (The New York Sun) and one of Amy Taubin's Top 10 Films of 2007 (ArtForum) -- apathetic teens Jessica (Anna Kavan) and Gus (Cole Pennsinger) share a fleeting moment at a Fourth of July party in Portland, but their relationship grows closer and more complex after Gus confronts her with a troubling secret.

Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Forget what you know about "Mumblecore" December 5, 2007
Aaron Katz and all the other filmmakers who have been lumped together as "mumblecore" don't even like that word, especially since their films couldn't be more different from one another. Katz's QUIET CITY and DANCE PARTY, USA are lyrical, smart, beautifully shot, expressionistic, naturalistic dramas about believably real people. These two films are NOT the superficial, 20-something hipster-fests like they're misrepresented to be. (Maybe some are, but not either of these two films!) Just check out some of the DVD reviews I've read from critics who say it far better than me:

"Through the course of this two-disc set, Aaron Katz can be seen to mature as a writer/director right before the eyes. The talent suggested by Dance Party, USA is confirmed by Quiet City. Katz is most assuredly one of the best emerging voices in American independent cinema. This splendidly produced and reasonably priced 2-disc set is HIGHLY RECOMMENDED."
- Chris Neilson, DVD TALK

"Katz's aesthetic is, on one hand, Ozu by way of high-def (lots of lovely haiku cutaways to New York City skylines and textures), and on the other, decelerated realism (twentysomethings chatting aimlessly and guardedly). It's easy to mock in the overview, but Katz has an eye for the in-between moments, and a satisfyingly subtle agenda for his films' overall arcs."
- Michael Atkinson, IFC NEWS

"Like other movies in the mumblecore sub-genre, Quiet City concerns itself with characters in their early 20s whose longing for intimate connection and self-definition far surpasses their ability to articulate it. But Katz distinguishes himself by embodying their anxieties rather than merely observing them.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars beautiful film January 5, 2009
Caught this at the IFC theater in NYC last year after seeing a preview for it at another 'mumblecore' film and absolutely fell in love with it. Pre-ordered it the first chance I got. Mumblecore is a genre that can go terribly wrong and seem super-contrived, even corny, much like hearing your own voice on a recording and cringing a little bit. This is not the case here; 'Quiet City' is a total triumph. It is subtle, poetic, dream-like and beautiful. You walk away from it feeling as though you've personally experienced this whole thing. That is the perfect way to describe it. You will watch it again and again, it leaves a very lasting impression. Cris is adorable and there's no way you won't have at least a little crush on him after you see this once...

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7 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Dance Party USA February 24, 2008
Better watched the second time through. An amazing performance by Cole Pensinger carried the film. I'm sure we'll see more of him. I liked it so much, I bought a second copy for a friend.
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3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Watch at your own peril September 1, 2010
I would not be writing this review if I thought that the other reviewers were accurate in their characterization of "Dance Party USA." Last night I wasted 66 minutes watching the mind-numbing movie, and I submit this review as a gesture of altruism -- if one person is dissuaded from renting or (God forbid!) buying this film, I shall have my reward in heaven. Trivial plot, inarticulate characters, mediocre photography.... no redeeming features except a short playing-time. -- If this is the future of independent American film-making, count me out. I'll watch "Touch of Evil" or "Gilda" again instead.
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