5.7/10
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65 user 155 critic

Damsels in Distress (2011)

Trailer
2:22 | Trailer
A trio of girls set out to change the male-dominated environment of the Seven Oaks college campus, and to rescue their fellow students from depression, grunge and low standards of every kind.

Director:

Whit Stillman

Writer:

Whit Stillman (screenplay)
1 win & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Greta Gerwig ... Violet
Carrie MacLemore ... Heather
Megalyn Echikunwoke ... Rose
Analeigh Tipton ... Lily
Ryan Metcalf ... Frank
Jermaine Crawford ... Jimbo
Caitlin FitzGerald ... Priss
Zach Woods ... Rick DeWolfe
Domenico D'Ippolito Domenico D'Ippolito ... Complainer Student
Nick Blaemire Nick Blaemire ... Freak Astaire
Aubrey Plaza ... Depressed Debbie
Hugo Becker ... Xavier
Meredith Hagner ... Alice
Joe Coots ... Barman
Adam Brody ... Fred Packenstacker / Charlie Walker
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Storyline

Violet and her two cohorts attempt to help their "less-fortunate" students at Seven Oaks College - primarily by running a Suicide Prevention Centre and offering their off-beat advice whenever they get a chance. Violet's newest rescue is transfer student, Lily, and Violet wants to teach her how to talk and dress properly, and how to select appropriate men to be interested in. Along their way in helping everybody at the college, the damsels teach the fraternity doofi to hit the books, they get their hearts broken, but then attempt to start an international dance craze. Written by napierslogs

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

For these girls... it's not what you learn, it's whom you educate. See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for mature thematic content including some sexual material | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Writer/Director Whit Stillman's first film in 13 years after The Last Days of Disco (1998). See more »

Goofs

Frank insists his eyes can't be blue since not everything he sees is blue, not knowing that light enters through a hole in each blue iris. See more »

Quotes

Violet: We get a lot of students coming to the center pretending to be depressed to get the donuts.
Rose: Confidence tricksters!
Violet: Yes, it's really bad, really cynical. And we made a pledge the donut company that we would only give the donuts to students who were depressed, suicidal or otherwise nutty. We're a non-profit, so the rules are pretty strict.
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Crazy Credits

Apologies to Johann Strauss Jr. - the Waltz James P. Johnson - the Charleston Ernest 'Chubby Checker' Evans - the Twist See more »

Alternate Versions

The BBFC in the UK originally classified the film with a 15 rating, but later classified a modified version of the film with a 12 rating, which had some of the stronger sexual references removed. See more »

Connections

References La Grande Illusion (1937) See more »

Soundtracks

Annabel Lee (Mercy)
Music by Mark Suozzo
Words by Mark Suozzo (as Suozzo) & Whit Stillman (as Stillman)
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User Reviews

 
Delightful, quirky, intelligent fun
9 February 2012 | by charlie-schlangenSee all my reviews

It's clear that some reviewers "got" this film and some didn't. As always, Stillman delivers with marvelous, laugh-out-loud funny dialogue. This is so rare that that that virtue alone sets it apart from the majority of the drivel that passes for conversation in movie scripts these days. You can't tell me that there aren't some one-liners in there that you hear and just *wish* you could have uttered yourself if only you'd had the wit (Whit?).

The characters are all flawed, some lovably so, some not--just like life. You're not meant to like all of them, and it's part of the subtle, social observation of which Stillman is capable that the unlikable characters are not always immediately unlikable. Some characters learn from their mistakes and misperceptions, some do not. Again, like life.

The thing that is so winsome about Stillman's movies is that virtue always triumphs. There is a sweetness to his choice that the good always eclipses the bad. It's almost heart-achingly sweet, because we know that that is not how things usually work out, and yet you find yourself rooting for these flawed, quirky, sometimes idiotic characters to get out of their own way and allow their better natures to win the day. I've wondered for a long time about the central role of dancing in his movies, and maybe it's that when you're dancing, it's hard to do much else, and you become one with music, rhythm, and your dance partner(s). Perhaps that's what he wants for his characters--to use dance as a vehicle to get out of their own way and lead a happier, less complicated, less tortured existence.

My favorite of his movies will always be "Metropolitan," but this is an excellent new addition to his oeuvre. We've been waiting for "the new one" for a while, and now that it's here I find it a sheer delight.


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Details

Official Sites:

Official site

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

26 April 2012 (New Zealand) See more »

Also Known As:

Violet Wister's Damsels in Distress See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$58,589, 8 April 2012

Gross USA:

$1,008,455

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$1,314,358
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Westerly Films See more »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital | Datasat

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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