Substitute the fantasy life of the rich and over-privileged youth
of Beverly Hills in Clueless for that of ultra-cool New
York hipsters, and you have a fairly good idea of what you're in
for with Party Girl.
Parker Posey stars as a club-going,
fashion-obsessed, lost child of the '90s. A perfect stereotype of
a Generation X-er, Posey refuses to get a real job and frequently
finds herself in trouble. With good intentions and no direction,
Posey is happy to spend her days dancing and primping, throwing
parties and tantrums.
After being arrested for throwing an
illegal fund-raiser (she needs to pay her rent), Posey is thrown
in jail and must be bailed out by her only relative, her aunt. To
pay her back, Posey works with her aunt in a New York public
library as a clerk, a prospect Posey is less than thrilled about,
to say the least.
Gradually, Posey learns the ins and outs
of the Dewey Decimal system and the card catalog, but is
continuously frustrated because the world won't take this
raver-turned-career-girl seriously. After a small accident in the
library (Posey and her falafel-peddling boyfriend leave the
library windows open during a rainstorm), she is fired and must
find a new job. Only then does she realize how well suited she is
for library work, (her blue jeans are in a very specific order
between the vintage and thrift-shop sections of her closet) and
how much she wants to become a real librarian. "I will not
be a waitress," she wails desperately.
Posey's club friends, who include
cross-dressing dancers and glitter-covered deejays, team up and
convince Posey's aunt to not only give her her job back, but to
support her decision to earn a degree in library science.
Although the plot is fairly predictable,
the strength of Posey's character is not. Just as in her roles in
Waiting for Guffman and Dazed and Confused, Posey
has mastered the art of comedic timing and a subtlety of facial
expression that Jim Carrey could take a cue from. She is a
singer, a dancer, a comedienne, and an actress all at once.
Posey's ability to make any character
larger than life saves this film from falling into the B-movie
category. Worth watching for the soundtrack and Posey's creative
ensembles, if nothing else.