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Independent Film Review - Quiet City

Updated on May 11, 2011
Scene in park, Jamie(Erin Fisher)& Charlie(Cris Lankenau)
Scene in park, Jamie(Erin Fisher)& Charlie(Cris Lankenau)

Opening Scene

The film begins at night in a partially lit Brooklyn subway station where Jamie who is only 21 arrives alone and searching for a 24hr cafe where she is supposed to meet a friend Samantha who she is going to stay with. Unable to reach Samantha on her cell phone she looks pretty distressed when a young man named Charlie happens to be walking past. Not seeing anybody else around she calls to him politely asking directions.

Charlie in this scene appears an obscure character, wearing a hoodie to later reveal his wavey and slightly carefree hairstyle. He has seperated from his girlfriend for a year and being pretty low and vacant is unable to describe the directions so offers to escort Jamie to her destination.

When they arrive at the cafe, Jamies friend is unable to be found and still not answering her phone. They sit and awkwardly and wait while Jamie reveals she has flown in from Atlanta and has no reliable address of her friends residence. Charlie reveals he is unemployed and inbetween 'unsuccessful' periods in his life, hoping to record his own music, he then proposes to her that the least he can do offer her a place to stay until the next morning when she can try again to reach her friend.

Cafe conversation
Cafe conversation
Searching for Samantha's apartment
Searching for Samantha's apartment

One thing I admire about the film is the freespirit of the two characters, this neo-romanticism of how two seemingly true to life vagabonds can find one another and establish a bond so quickly based on this alone. The following 24 hours is spent doing just so. Charlie shows Jamie how he learnt to play the organ recording himself with a dictaphone and playing it back to himself, they have fun flirting and doing generally laidback actvities such as operating a large scale model crane and having races in Park Slope.

They then embark on a adventure to find where Jamies friend has disappeared, they even climb to a second story window and enter her flat which appears vacant yet all her stuff is remaining. Concerned but being reassured that her friend is a grown adult they continue in their travels and decide to attend an art show being held by one of Charlies friends. It is here that we discover some secrets about Jamie of her slightly embaressing job at home as a waitress and how she hopes to be a writer. 

 Something which adds to the beauty of this movie is the wealth of artistic landscape shots, showing glowing yellows and oranges of skylines both natural and industrial. Accopanied by the wonderfully composed classical piano soundtrack of Keegan Dewitt.

Quiet City Trailer

Keegan Dewitt - Pianist

 At the art exhibition they first run into one of Charlies friends Kyle who complains about not hearing from him, not answering his calls and teasing him about being 'hung up on a girl back in Florida'. He also suggests an escape for Charlie to go with him to another city and start a new.

They are then invited back to a party being held by the artist Robin who is excited to see that Charlie is doing better. At the party Robin talks with Jamie about how shes having trouble relating to men sexually and she would prefer have passionate sex with a man she doesnt know and also tells a story of how she asked a guy if she could just lie on top of him. 

Charlie, Jamie and Kyle at Art Show
Charlie, Jamie and Kyle at Art Show
artist friend Robin
artist friend Robin

There are many opportunities for the couple to engage in sexual activities such as the part when jamie asks if she can take a shower on arrival at Charlies or when they fall asleep together. This is one thing i like about the movie, which is the fact that it doesnt use sex to grab the viewers attention and rather focuses on geniune emotion.

We never really find out whether the two form a relationship, although I think the underlying theme of the movie is establishing bonds and the story of youth growing up with the hectic and sometimes lack of a 'human touch' city environment. The end scene picture our couple staring at the city landscape contemplating the future paths.

This is actually a compilation with another film called Dance Party USA by Benten Films, directed by Aaron Katz.  I prefer this more abstract album art to the original modernist green blocked cover.
This is actually a compilation with another film called Dance Party USA by Benten Films, directed by Aaron Katz. I prefer this more abstract album art to the original modernist green blocked cover.
End scene. I have tried my best to find original images across the net for this film which is in short supply.
End scene. I have tried my best to find original images across the net for this film which is in short supply.


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    • liljen23 profile image


      8 years ago from Shreveport,LA

      This hub is very interesting. Thumbs up for me..

    • Madison22 profile image


      8 years ago from NYC

      Seems like a very good movie. You're right the landscape scenes and sky lines are spectacular. Watching the trailer reminded me of the times me and my husband spent when we first met each other and began dating. I love a film that captures you on emotion rather than sex. That usually means it's a well made film. Thank you for a great hub!


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