Brad Fraser is a playwright with an international renown for dark, witty and sometimes controversial plays. Unidentified Human Remains And The True Nature Of Love (1989) was produced worldwide and in 1994 was adapted by Fraser for the screen. Directed by Denys Arcand, the screenplay won Fraser a Genie Award.
Leaving Metropolis is Fraser’s adaptation of his play Poor Superman, which was also produced worldwide. The film is Fraser’s directorial debut. Many readers may have seen the play when it was performed in Sydney. Some stage plays make a seamless transition to film and others remain a little stagy. Perhaps because this is Fraser’s directing debut coupled with the fact he adapted his own play, Leaving Metropolis falls more into the stagy category.
There are some great one-liners such as if you’re born with a cunt you’re fucked, and how did I ever drown in someone so shallow? but overall many of the scenes are too theatrical. Canadian 30-year-old TV actor (although he was in Bride Of Chucky) Vincent Corazza is cute and well-built -“ perhaps a little too cute for your average Winnipeg husband but certainly pleasing on the eye. Troy Ruptash (The Perfect Son) is less convincing as the artist.
Unfortunately the film is not as strong as the play but is entertaining with enough visual pleasures to sustain you, even if the narrative doesn’t.