INSPIRED: Parker Posey in Party Girl
[You know that feeling you get when you see something amazing or hear something surprising and you find yourself totally transfixed? Pop sociologist Roland Barthes described that moment as the "punctum" or puncture wound, that feeling of excitement you get when you're exposed to something that speaks to you. Every Monday we bring you INSPIRED, a new space where we share with you the cool, punctum-y things that get us going.]
TITLE: Party Girl
MEDIUM: Sundance Film, Off-Beat Comedy
THE PUNCTUM: The second I saw Mary walking down the sidewalk working that leopard fur coat, I knew she was it.
WHY DOES IT INSPIRE YOU?: Party Girl is one of those cult-y movies you watch with a bunch of friends late at night while screaming all the lines at the screen. “Do you want the Turkish delight?” “Sure. Bring it out.” Classic! It’s about an “it” girl who goes from throwing the hottest parties in New York to becoming a librarian. She can’t pay the rent, but she looks fabulous. What’s great about it, though, aside from being a tale about creative young people trying to “make it” in New York, is that we get to see how different the city was in the 1990s. What New Yorkers now experience as a smorgasbord of boutiques and artisanal cupcake shops was once a dark, gritty hell hole! Party Girl gives us the height of that New York—the peak of club culture, DJ culture, and supermodels. Though fictional, the movie inspires me because it is kind of an historical document about an era of New York history that’s long gone, yet the film still relates to today’s youth culture.
WHAT ARE ITS FASHION ATTRIBUTES?: I love Mary’s quirky sense of style, and it’s a look that seems to keep getting recycled. She captures an edgy, “downtown,” anything matches with anything vibe, and her style is as much a character in the movie as she is. Besides, I think Party Girl invented that whole hot-girl-walking-down-the-street-wearing-a-fabulous-outfit-knowing-she’s-fabulous-but-also-unaware-that-she’s-fabulous trope that Sex and the City took to the hilt. In fact, it’s no coincidence that Sex and the City first aired in 1998, just three years after Party Girl, and in the opening episode of Sex there’s that sidewalk shot of Carrie Bradshaw walking around in the middle of June in a fur coat.
Anyway, Party Girl makes me want to throw on a fur coat and go around asking hot Lebanese food truck people if I can have a falafel with hot sauce, a side order of Baba ghanoush and a seltzer, please?