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The second film from writer/director Whit Stillman, Barcelona is a smart, urbane comedy of manners set in Spain at the tail end of the Cold War. Taylor Nichols stars as Ted, an American salesman living in Barcelona. Out of the blue, he is visited by his acidic cousin Fred (Chris Eigeman), a U.S. Navy officer sent abroad to work damage control on rising anti-American sentiment. The textbook "Ugly American," Fred travels through the city in full military regalia, impervious to the constant taunts of "Fascist!" Like the similarly self-absorbed Ted, who has become involved with… More

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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 81%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"An exquisitely composed yet fiercely combative satire (set in the eighties) of European mores as seen through the eyes of two young exemplars of the American establishment."
‑ Richard Brody, New Yorker
"A remarkable find: The film doesn't stop at getting your attention, it rewards it."
‑ Peter Travers, Rolling Stone
"Oozes affection for its subjects, and that carries it through even the weaker character moments and the more jarring shifts of narrative and tone."
‑ Tim Brayton, Antagony & Ecstasy
‑ Christopher Null,
"Stillman's dramatic instinct falters badly."
‑ Stephen Farber, Movieline
"This is fairly amusing stuff-brittle, fresh, and impudent - if you can stomach all the upscale arrogance."
‑ Jonathan Rosenbaum, Chicago Reader
"It appears at first to be about the casual lives of young men trying to launch their careers, but eventually ... it reveals darker depths and meanings."
‑ Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times
"The unsympathetic characters and their slight adventure story was never compelling."
‑ Dennis Schwartz, Ozus' World Movie Reviews
"I recommend Barcelona on the proviso that you see [Stillman's] other two films first."
‑ Jamie Gillies, Apollo Guide
"The script and acting is excellent, supplying the little-known actors with some truly interesting and some very classic dialogue."
‑ Ted Prigge,
"Slyly hilarious, esthetically sound and spiritually restorative."
‑ Rick Groen, Globe and Mail
"This film is the distillation of an intriguing blend of romantic comedy, satire, drama, and philosophy."
‑ James Berardinelli, ReelViews
"Darker and more acidic than Stillman's previous outing, this comedy, about two Americans at the end of the Cold War, could be described as Metropolitan meets Where the Boys Are meets The Year of Living Dangerously."
‑ Emanuel Levy, EmanuelLevy.Com
"A very funny cross-cultural film about some idiosyncratic people who talk about what's on their minds."
‑ Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat, Spirituality and Practice
"Just clever enough to get by on its charm, but Stillman really needs to stop wallowing in his own cleverness and start telling stories."
‑ Scott Renshaw,
More reviews for Barcelona on Rotten Tomatoes