200 Cigarettes is a movie with an ensemble cast (all of whom are pretty famous now so I can’t even remember their characters names half the time) about various pairings of people on New Years Eve in 1981, in New York City. What they have in common is that they’re all eventually going to go the same party, and are all at some point going to get in a cab driven by Dave Chapelle. Occasionally, we’ll flash to the party hostess (Martha Plimpton) losing her friggin’ mind because no one is showing up to her party because they don’t want to get there too early. I always hated hanging out with people like that, who insisted that we had to sit around their house until 10 pm before going to a bar or a party because ‘no one would be there yet’. But I turned 50 before I was even old enough to legally drink so what do I know.
My least favorite group is the ‘artist group’ which is a guy, his girlfriend, and her friend who hits on the guy on the sly. They’re just all annoying and boring. My favorite is Paul Rudd and Courtney Love being mean to each other and in general being sarcastic assholes. My favorite single character is Guillermo Diaz because this:
The common theme in each of the stories is that at least one person in each pair/group is having the most dramatic issues ever, Paul Rudd got dumped and it’s his birthday, Kate Hudson is the clumsiest and unluckiest girl in the world, Gaby Hoffman is convinced that she’s going to die in the big bad city, etc. Then, naturally, they run into problems throughout the night as they navigate their way through the city as Martha Plimpton slowly unravels and eventually decides to drink her part fail sadness away, until she passes out shortly before everyone arrives. So what happens at the party?
Well, they hilariously skip that except for some polaroid-esque freeze frames, and at the end of the movie we get to see who ended up going home with who.
This is my favorite kind of movie because it’s a comedy, but it’s not full of purposeful jokes so there’s no ‘whomp whomp’ moment if you think a joke isn’t funny. It’s light-hearted and fun for the most part, and the perfect movie to eat food while watching with friends. If you talk over a lot of it you’ll obviously miss some of the dialogue, but the plot is pretty easy to follow so no one is going to get lost.
I wasn’t kidding about that famous cast! Most of them weren’t super-famous when the movie was released, but if they weren’t then they are now. Imma go clockwise from the top left in this photo: Guillermo Diaz (Half Baked, Weeds, Scandal) Jay Mohr (Jerry McGuire, Suburgatory, stand up) Courtney Love (those movies I mentioned and also a small part in Sid and Nancy where she was actually pretty terrible), Ben Affleck (everything, ruining rage/faux nerds lives right now), Angela Featherstone (The Wedding Singer, the girl on friends who caused Ross to say ‘we were on a break’, Con Air), Paul Rudd (Wet Hot America Summer, 40 Year Old Virgin, Clueless), Martha Plimpton (Goonies, Pecker, Raising Hope, being a badass feminist on twitter), Casey Affleck (yes they’re brothers, he’s also Joaquin Phoenix’s brother-in-law, yes he’s vegan, The Last Kiss, The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford), Christina Ricci (Addams Family, Pecker, Monster), Janeane Garofalo (Reality Bites, Wet Hot American Summer, stand up), Dave Chapelle (Half Baked, Con Air, his own tv show, giving the finger to Hollywood), and down in the corner is Kate Hudson (Almost Famous and a bunch of chick movies i’ve never seen). Not pictured for some reason is Gaby Hoffman (Uncle Buck, Crystal Fairy, soon the Veronica Mars movie!!!!), and Nicole Ari Parker (Soul Food [tv series], Boogie Nights). The actors who played Hilary and Eric haven’t done much else worth mentioning. Phew! Onto the food! No one eats a meal at a New Year’s Eve Party, so let’s snack!
Snack 1: I recommend just eating this vegan crab dip with crackers instead of licking it off of Elvis Costello’s glasses. I’ve never eaten crab dip but since the person who made it isn’t vegan i’ll trust their opinion that it’s similar!
Snack 2: Nothing says ‘I want you to sleep with me, bartender’ like drunkenly demanding (smoky boiled) peanuts.
Snack 3: Because I have also eaten a huge chili because I thought it was okra, I deeply sympathize with Kate Hudson. Let’s avoid any possible burning confusing and eat this Bhindi Zunka.
Dessert: It’s not New Year’s Eve without