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THE LAST DAYS OF DISCO

 
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At Theaters: 5/29/1998 On Video: 10/13/1998
Rated: R Length: 1 hr. 55 min.
Internet: Web Site Movie ID: 059814
Studio: Castle Rock Entertainment
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Storyline Heading

Two recent graduates escape at night from their jobs to the most popular dance club during disco's last days. There they fall in with a group of guys who were friends and antagonists at Harvard.

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DETAILED STORYLINE
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Movie Type (Genre) Heading
Romantic Comedy - The latest look back at the early 1980s has a decidedly different flavor than most, thanks to the memorable dialogue of Whit Stillman. Of course, for those in search of a great disco soundtrack, this film has it as well.
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Cast and Crew Heading
Chloe Sevigny (Palmetto)
Kate Beckinsale (Much Ado About Nothing)
Chris Eigeman (Barcelona)
Mackenzie Astin (Evening Star)
Matt Keeslar
Dir/Prod/Wri: Whit Stillman (Barcelona)
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Production Notes Heading
The Scene
The Beginning of Disco
About The Club
The Sound Track
About The Production
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Content Heading
PROFANITY: Occasional and moderate.
SEX/NUDITY: One sex scene featuring a nude woman. One topless scene.
VIOLENCE: One scene features some violence and minor bloodshed.
DRUGS/ALCOHOL: Frequent drinking and drug use.
ACTION: None
COMEDY: Most of the comedy is dialogue-related (cerebral).
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Critic's Review Heading
Good
As the date on the calendar prepares to switch from the 1990s to the 2000s, society's imponderable fascination with things 20 years past begins to shift its focus from the 1970s to the 1980s. Thus far, most of the movies to transport audiences to the Reagan era have been characterized by nostalgia, Generation X angst, or sophomoric humor. With The Last Days of Disco, independent writer/director Whit Stillman chooses to view the early '80s through a lens coated by satire. There's also a social message here about how many of the shallow life-views adopted during the period continue to plague our culture today. While disco music has gone and returned, many of the ideals that were around at the time of its demise have persisted ever since.
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Opinion Heading

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D ETAILED S TORYLINE
In the last months of the disco era, a popular dance club becomes the center of nightlife for a group of young people who recently arrived in Manhattan.

ALICE (Chloë Sevigny) and CHARLOTTE (Kate Beckinsale) are recent Hampshire College graduates who, living on meager book publishing pay, are forced to room together with a third roommate (Tara Subkoff as HOLLY) in a cramped railroad apartment in Manhattan's Yorkville section.

Charlotte consoles Alice for having been a boyfriendless social failure in college -- but things are looking up for her since she met two interesting Harvard guys at a party in Sag Harbor.

The first night, intimidated by the throng outside the club, Alice and Charlotte take a cab around the block to try to improve their chances.

Charlotte: "We look really good tonight. I'm sure we're going to get in."

Later, inside, they run into both objects of Alice's affection: JIMMY STEINWAY (Mackenzie Astin), the "dancing ad man" who's hanging onto his agency job by getting clients into the club, and TOM (Robert Sean Leonard), a handsome corporate lawyer with an interest in the environment and Scrooge McDuck.

Both were college friends of the club's underboss, DES (Chris Eigeman), a seemingly bisexual lothario who lets friends in the back way if they have any trouble with the front door-nazi, VAN (Burr Steers). There's also JOSH (Matt Keeslar), a neophyte prosecutor in the Manhattan D.A.'s office with an inordinate enthusiasm for disco and dance places.

All have been out of college long enough to have gone on to law or graduate school and then come back to get jobs in the city -- in fact, they're at about that point many people lose their first jobs.

It becomes apparent that the club is not being run according to conventionally accepted accounting principles. BERNIE RAFFERTY (David Thornton), the oddball club owner, pockets cash from the till and has an odd vendetta against people who work in advertising: they're "too nice," he says -- he doesn't want "that element" in the club.

Meanwhile, at their publishing day jobs Charlotte and Alice study formulas for finding bestsellers while fending off the critical interest of anti-disco DAN (Matt Ross) who then shows up in their night lives, too.

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