By Ryan Keating-Lambert
200 Cigarettes is a gem of a New Year’s Eve ensemble comedy starring A LOT of talented Hollywood actors including Ben Affleck, Casey Affleck, Dave Chapelle, Martha Plimpton, Kate Hudson, Janeane Garofalo, Courtney Love, Christina Ricci and Paul Rudd just to name a few.
It’s New Year’s Eve, 1981 and we follow a group of misfit twenty-somethings through the East Village of NYC as they try to find dates, make resolutions, and stay in the safe part of town. They eventually come together in a final party hosted by the hilariously cynical crab dip making Monica (Martha Plimpton).
This 1999 comedy produced by MTV is such fun and didn’t do particularly well with critics back in the day, but has since gained popularity and achieved almost cult status. Here are some reasons why you should watch 200 Cigarettes this year, not that horrible romantic comedy New Year’s Eve. LAME.
1. Female director
We all know female directors are few and far between! 200 Cigarettes was directed by Canadian Risa Bramon Garcia who also brought us the recent critically acclaimed TV series Masters of Sex.
2. Christina Ricci’s Long Island accent
Seriously, it’s out of control hilarious as Ricci and Gaby Hoffman (also costars on 90’s girl classic Now and Then) spend half of the night trying to find her cousin’s party but get’s hopelessly lost in the East Village.
3. Unreal 80’s fashion
Costume design was done by Susan Lyall of Empire Records fame (another great film), though her recent work includes films like Side Effects, RED and Money Monster. Hipsters would kill for some of these outfits today.
4. Elvis Costello cameo
Without being too much of a spoiler, singer-songwriter Elvis Costello pops up in the movie more than once, so keep your eyes and ears peeled.
5. An incredible soundtrack
The best thing about 80’s era films is the soundtrack and 200 cigarettes is no exception. It tends to steer clear of cliche tunes that we know all too well and gives us something a little different. With tracks by Roxy Music, Bow Wow Wow, Devo and a host of others, it’d be pretty easy to rock out to this on New Year’s Eve.