New York's opulent art and financial worlds collide when a stressed-out stockbroker meets a beautiful and cagey French actress...
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Probably the most maligned American Playhouse production ever aired, All the Vermeers in New York inspired unanimous contempt from TV reviewers. This 1990 anti-rhapsody in Manhattan landscapes forewarned its viewers of a tedious experience, and People magazine said it was "as exciting as watching a painting dry." What they objected to as "arty" may have had something to do with Jost's static photography or minutes-long lyrical interludes. Composed in, on top of, and around steel and stone urban monuments--as opposed to the warm and unabashed human subjects of Vermeer--Jost's brash depiction of a post-Reagan-era Manhattan and its inhabitants (at various turns a usurious art dealership, a cutthroat Wall Street brokerage, and the superficialities of the New York dating scene) may make Woody Allen's Manhattan seem like a scenic flight in positive-thinking guru Tony Robbins's helicopter, but Jost's dramatic interest isn't in mere exposé. A stock trader's lust for the killer deal is juxtaposed with his obsessions for a rare painting and later for a homesick, unemployed French actress (Emannuelle Chaulet). He spies her in a room looking at the same painting--but what they are looking at becomes, in the psychological context of the film, as mysterious and elusive as what they are looking for. Jost's most expensive movie to date--a mere $250,000--turned out to be the most virulent of his unflinching critiques of the destructive powers of materialism in the American--or, by the romantic and historical associations he provides, European--psyche. --Christopher ChaseFrom the Back Cover:
When Mark (Stephen Lack) meets the alluring and mysterious Anna (Emmanuelle Chaulet) in the Metropolitan Museum's Vermeer Room, he finds anything but the solace he seeks from his stressful life as a Wall Street broker in the erratic late 1980s. In Anna, a French actress with both eyes on his heart and wallet, he thinks he has found the beauty and passion that have always eluded him. This lyrical, witty masterpiece of modern film evokes the splendor of New York's art and financial worlds while scrutinizing the corrupton and decadence that linger beneath the city's opulent surfaces.
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