Quantcast

Video of the Day

Masthead

Editor-in-Chief
Alex Carnevale
(e-mail/tumblr/twitter)

Features Editor
Mia Nguyen
(e-mail)

Reviews Editor
Ethan Peterson

This Recording

is dedicated to the enjoyment of audio and visual stimuli. Please visit our archives where we have uncovered the true importance of nearly everything. Should you want to reach us, e-mail alex dot carnevale at gmail dot com, but don't tell the spam robots. Consider contacting us if you wish to use This Recording in your classroom or club setting. We have given several talks at local Rotarys that we feel went really well.

Pretty used to being with Gwyneth

Regrets that her mother did not smoke

Frank in all directions

Jean Cocteau and Jean Marais

Simply cannot go back to them

Roll your eyes at Samuel Beckett

John Gregory Dunne and Joan Didion

Metaphors with eyes

Life of Mary MacLane

Circle what it is you want

Not really talking about women, just Diane

Felicity's disguise

Live and Active Affiliates
This area does not yet contain any content.
Thursday
Jan262012

« In Which We Are The First To Leave The Party »

Last Dance

by BRITTANY JULIOUS

Party Girl
dir. Daisy von Scherler Mayer
94 min.

The most iconic Party Girl moment for me is Mary's walk of pride post-jail. Things happen to her. Life is something that happens around her parties, outfits, and friendships. A night in jail is just another event in a long line of events, but it can't define her. She is too much her own girl for that.

I say girl instead of woman, as Party Girl is a film about an emotional late bloomer's transition into adulthood. Mary (Parker Posey) may scrape by on rent parties to keep her spacious Chinatown loft or parade around the East Village in Chanel, but she is no more grown in her actions and choices than any other member of the underground party scene that frames the narrative.

I first watched Party Girl in college during my film boom dedicated to post-collegiate happenings. Paranoid about a future that increasingly appeared bleak and rife with stress, I took to films featuring "hip, young things" or just "young things" as a way to seek solace and comfort before the party of sporadic classes and little responsibility ended.

With its charming outfits, spastic supporting characters, and rampant early-90s Manhattan romanticism, Party Girl was a personal favorite. In particular, Parker Posey's talents – the way she needs only a facial expression or two to dominate and escalate the comedy of any given scene, her voice that is simultaneously Valley Girl and know-it-all pretentious – created a lasting impression. Watching it again recently further cemented the film as a modern, independent classic for the girls and women who view "a good time" as a translatable goal from work to play.

For the casual viewer, Mary's transformation from Downtown It Girl to library student is a radical one. But director Daisy von Scherler Mayer subtly hints at the necessary skills of a librarian that Mary possesses throughout the film. She is able to get along – or at least communicate effectively – with different types of people. She has a general curiosity for the world around her and approaches each person she meets with an eagerness to help, or just bring them into her fold. And her closet – organized in a methodical system that only she truly understands – speaks to the Dewey Decimal System, a source of anxiety followed by pleasure for the heroine.

Mary ditches a date with young, dreamy falafel seller Mustafa to learn the Dewey Decimal System, all the while transforming the space into a party-like space of her own. She dances atop the table in her shorts and combat boots. She gets things done (“things” being a knowledge of a system she had been unfamiliar with upon taking the job at the library) while still maintaining a connection to her old self and her true self.

Later, Mary organizes temporary roommate Leo’s record collection based on this same system she spent a long evening trying to understand. Mary honestly described the evening as, “The wildest night of my life.” Understanding the system was further solidification of the connection between her burgeoning interests and her love for organizing the people, places, and things that are a part of her life.

Leo (Guillermo Díaz) is visibly upset by the order that disrupted his chaos of more than 1,000 singles and LP’s, but Mary remains unfazed by the potential problems in her unwarranted organizing project. For Leo, it is a challenge to his lack of a system and the potential catalyst for losing a paid gig as a DJ. For Mary, it is a way to more effectively provide the world to Leo. Like telling Leo earlier about Rene, the owner of the bar that Leo is auditioning at as a DJ, organizing his set of records is a means of helping a friend and bringing him more closely into her fold.

This method doesn’t always prove to be beneficial. A party thrown at the end of the second act turns disastrous for Mary who no longer has her library clerk job. Unlike her work in organizing Leo’s record collection, Mary’s party is another task to make rent. Inviting friends to DJ or Mustafa to sell his food is less a method of helping a friend succeed and more a means of making things better for herself. At 24, Mary’s growing sense of purpose feels familiar, but it is her quick emotional descent once that newly-found career path is taken from her that is disturbing in its truth.

Thus far in this decade of personal development, I have realized people are unhappy or dissatisfied, that it is not just an internal frustration, but also a universal, generational worry. I’ve also realized that people have many goals and aspirations, and the older they get, the more hesitant they are to admit them. Goals begin to feel like things that young people do and accomplish, and now one’s goals should be simpler: fall in love, get married, have children, live in comfort. I remember how my friends talked about what they wanted to do, but now they talk more about what things have been done to them. There is a loss of control. Career goals are still exciting, but the ability to hold on to them as reality loudly asserts the difficulties of The Way We Live Now, can crush even the most starry-eyed party girls.

Mary eventually triumphs as friends and coworkers believe in her and it is this moment that makes the film so memorable. As a viewer, I come back to Party Girl for the fashion, the dialogue, but also the "happy ending." There is a comfort in seeing one’s life not end in a similar way to how it began: confused, jumbled, and floundering.

Brittany Julious is the senior editor of This Recording. She is a writer living in Chicago. She tumbls here and twitters here. You can find an archive of her writing on This Recording here

"Peter Piper" - Run DMC (mp3)

"Mama Told Me Not To Come" - The Wolfgang Press (mp3)

"Burning (Vibe mix)" - MK (mp3)

References (92)

References allow you to track sources for this article, as well as articles that were written in response to this article.
  • Response
    In Which We Are The First To Leave The Party - Home - This Recording
  • Response
    Response: indianapolis jobs
    In Which We Are The First To Leave The Party - Home - This Recording
  • Response
    Response: jobs in dallas
    In Which We Are The First To Leave The Party - Home - This Recording
  • Response
    Response: russian brides
    In Which We Are The First To Leave The Party - Home - This Recording
  • Response
    In Which We Are The First To Leave The Party - Home - This Recording
  • Response
    Response: hey there
    In Which We Are The First To Leave The Party - Home - This Recording
  • Response
    In Which We Are The First To Leave The Party - Home - This Recording
  • Response
    Response: weblink
    In Which We Are The First To Leave The Party - Home - This Recording
  • Response
    Response: useful reference
    Awesome Web site, Stick to the great work. Thanks a lot!
  • Response
    I am a little confused on exactly how I would make money by blogging, I mean who pay me and how, once I blog who come to my page and how do I get them there. I really appreciate if some one could break it down for me.. . Thanks!.
  • Response
    How do i add third party widgets to free wordpress blogs ?
  • Response
    Response: legal steroids
    Does Joomla have a Component that help to create a forum like Yahoo Answers?
  • Response
    Response: what is an ira
    I never thought of it that way, well put!
  • Response
    What is a good firefox addon to save massive number of pictures on separated links?
  • Response
    Response: interceptor
    Is Joomla software harder than Dreamweaver to learn. I have been told that Joomla is easier than Dreamweaver. Do Joomla make its own codes like Dreamweaver. I want to learn it and I want to buy the software. Please give me your opinion. Do I need to buy the Joomla program ...
  • Response
    I'm just looking for place to start up a blog with a friend where we talk sports in Chicago as well as other things going on nationwide....just for fun. Any suggestions on sites would be great. Thanks..
  • Response
    Response: american bullion
    When trying to publish a book wouldn't you protect your story or content with a copyright?
  • Response
    Response: pet supplies
    How do IE and Firefox make money? Where is the revenue source coming in from?
  • Response
    im starting a blog and i need a way to prove the content is mine so i think when i write a post i will record it on camtasia studio, will it prove 100% it is mine?. . i dont want to pay 30 $ each post to copyright them..
  • Response
    Response: diseo web
    What happens to files when my wordpress space upgrade expires?
  • Response
    What degree could I get involving music AND creative writing?
  • Response
    What if i created a blog with the same name as other blog accidentally? is that legal?
  • Response
    Response: see post
    I use a micro SD card between my laptop and netbook as an external hardrive for my class files. I often download files on one computer or the other without the drive in that computer. Is it possible to set my computer up so that when I insert my drive my ...
  • Response
    Response: march madness 2014
    Does WordPress save all blog posts to only one file? If so, what file is it?
  • Response
    Response: click for source
    How can creative writing be taught in a standardized way?
  • Response
    Response: look at this site
    How to switch Wordpress menu from right side to the left?
  • Response
    What degree could I get involving music AND creative writing?
  • Response
    Where can I get copyright free content to write blog on the net?
  • Response
    Response: broken windshield
    What is the easiest way to get updates from my subscribed blogs?
  • Response
    Firefox wont start but when I open a link that opens firefox, It works fine. What do I do?
  • Response
    So I created a secondary blog off my first one, but I now want my secondary blog to be my personal or my main blog. So that as soon and I sign on the newer blog I made would be my default blog. If that makes any sense... Is there a ...
  • Response
    Response: visit our website
    I'd see all kinds of ads about blogging on the Internet to earn money, but don't know of anybody that has actually made any money this way. I'd love to hear from anybody who has..
  • Response
    Response: Plumber Lucan
    I want to write an article on my website to share with people. How can I make sure that no one copies what I have written and claim it as their own? Is there some place where I can "register" my work so that I have proof that it's my work ...
  • Response
    I have heard that you can make money from blogging, but i really don't understand the concept. How do you make the money? How much can you make? Is it hard? Is it easy? Is it time consuming? Is it worth it? If you could answer that would be great, thanks.. ...
  • Response
    Response: Driving Schools
    What is a good free blogging website that I can respond to blogs and others will respond to me?
  • Response
    How can I show the latest article of my blogger blog on a different site?s home page?
  • Response
    how can u get rid of unwanted files on ur computer....like old movies u deleted that are still on the computer or books that were digital?!.
  • Response
    Response: continue reading
    I am starting a Virtual assistant business and would like to start building a website that can expand with me. I am on a very limited income so I need to start it for next to no money upfront. Please help..
  • Response
    Response: health insurance
    I have a blog using Blogspot. I would like to ban a specific person from viewing and/or commenting. I am not looking to make the entire blog password-protected or moderate comments. I just want to ban a specific IP address. How can I do this?.
  • Response
    Response: link
    A computer program called Antivi took over my computer. How do I get rid of it?
  • Response
    How do I get blog stats widget on my new wp blog?
  • Response
    I know there are lots of firefox addons that help manage saving pictures, but what I am specifically looking for is, one which can allow me to simply paste the picture link and it will download the picture from that link. . Reason being, the pictures I am saving is has ...
  • Response
    Response: look at more info
    Computer question (How long does an average person keep a computer for?
  • Response
    Is a Wordpress or Blogspot a better place to host your blog?
  • Response
    Response: more…
    We want to start our own blog page together on blogspot, but I just thought about us having our own separate google accounts. How can we start a blog page together where it'll be easier for both of us to log on besides just using one person's google account?.
  • Response
    I have a Blogspot blog, and I want that any time I publish a new post on my blog, a link to the new post will automatically be added to my Facebook news feed. Is there anyway to do this?.
  • Response
    I want to start a blog that deals with moral issues. I want people to be able to see it, and also be easy to use and post..
  • Response
    How to apply a wordpress theme downloaded from other websites?
  • Response
    Response: why not check here
    I started writing a book, and I wanted to put the chapters of the book on a different blog then my other less thrilling post. I don't know how to, though,.
  • Response
    Response: light bulbs
    I am constantly signing in and out of my college website and it is rather annoying to always have to type in my user id. It used to be saved, but then I updated Firefox and it won't save.. . If anyone could explain to make Firefox remember that would be ...
  • Response
    Response: visit your url
    Is it possible to register a domain name and start web site through Microsoft Small Business in UAE ?.. If it is not possible through Microsoft small business, please advise me the best website to create a new website which can operate from UAE..
  • Response
    What are the best free blogs that allow user-sponsored advertising and sales?
  • Response
    Response: check out here
    How do you get menus and modules to change language when using the Joom!Fish Joomla extension?
  • Response
    I am 13 and write the scripts for the school's plays, write stories and film mini documentaries. I want to become a creative writer for WWE (writing the storylines). I know I will have to work for other TV productions before joining the WWE corporate. How can I improve my creative ...
  • Response
    Response: try this out
    Thing is, I've just migrated to Wordpress. However, I have a number of people who have subscribed to my feeds from my blogger blog. What should I do to ensure that they now receive updates from my Wordpress blog? . . FYI, I have a feedburner account..
  • Response
    How do i put the blog comment approval on my myspace to approve blog comments before posting them?
  • Response
    Response: visit this site
    I'm looking for a Wordpress magazine theme that let's te readers subscribe to a newsletter. How do I find out if a template can do that? When I look at the demos I never come across this function. Thanks!.
  • Response
    Actually, I?m a blog starter. I just want more people to visit my blog to make me a popular blog. I?m capable of writing, and I know writing skill is a must. But is there any other way to make my blog more popular?.
  • Response
    Response: breaking news
    This would have to be a new blog. Something that you want to read about, but havent found online. This can be religious, fashion-based, etc. Im just getting some ideas for the blog i want to start- Thanks!.
  • Response
    What is the difference between Computer science and information technology?
  • Response
    Response: next page
    There's an interesting webpage that has just been deleted, but thanks to the miracle of hibernation, it's still open in Firefox. The problem is, when I save it, it seems to attempt to retrieve the page from its source on the internet, which no longer exists. Is there any way I ...
  • Response
    Response: link
    Everyone says you can't move a primary Tumlbr blog without deleting the account, but what about a secondary blog? I have two accounts, one that I use and one that I just started. I don't use the primary blog on the old one, but I do use a secondary blog on ...
  • Response
    Response: click this site
    Is there NON-Computer Science MS courses available in USA universities for a student with computer background?
  • Response
    Is there a service available that geotags blog posts while on the go and is able to post to map with others?
  • Response
    Response: iphone 4s unlock
    I want to create a custom Wordpress theme, but I don't have administrative access to the computer that I'm using, so I can't install Wordpress to test my theme. Is there another easy way to do it? I have photoshop, and notepad ++ both installed on my flash drive, but as ...
  • Response
    where is the best site to do a blog,blog tips be grateful. thanks for help. sam i tried get your blog but seems no thread,check it out.
  • Response
    I need to earn a little extra money and I am a very opinionated person so I feel like writing blogs would be a good start to making some extra cash. I am a full time college student and I also have a $20 hour a week job but I am ...
  • Response
    Response: terry cloth robes
    I am new to blogging. How do I add a subscribe function to my site so new post will go to their email?
  • Response
    Response: click here now
    I am running a small computer repair business in rural Ireland and would like to expand into doing low small, low cost, high quiltiy wordpress brochure websites for other small businesses.. . How can I find outsourcing partners abroad, that I can just simply email the content to, and have them ...
  • Response
    A friend has a computer that turns itself off after a certain period of time of inactivity. And all you have to do is move the mouse a little, and the computer comes back on. Maybe the computer is not completely off, maybe this is called hibernate or standby or something. ...
  • Response
    click here for greatest posicionamiento web seo anywhere
  • Response
    I am new to blogging. How do I add a subscribe function to my site so new post will go to their email?.
  • Response
    Response: seo web
    get top quality seo madrid anywhere
  • Response
    I want to start a blog/online diary, but not sure where to start..
  • Response
    Response: medical insurance
    I don't really like livejournal or xanga. I already have both of those. I was going to try deadjournal because I read on here that it was really good, but I don't want to have to pay for it and you have to have an invite code to get in free. ...
  • Response
    Response: corporate dealers
    I have a shopping cart site on Joomla. I want to add my wordpress blog to my joomla site. How do i do this? Many sites suggest using a tool called joomblog, but joomla shut that product down because messes with the core modules of the site. . . What do ...
  • Response
    click here for best dog arthritis anywhere
  • Response
    I would like to start a blog speaking out against feminism. So I would like to know the best way to do it and the best place to go to start one..
  • Response
    Response: discover here
    Im based in London have worked as a secretary for more than 10 years and have an HND in Business Studies but am tired of admin work and office politics and would like to do something more creative- change careers.. . I write in my spare time and have attended an ...
  • Response
    Response: post properties
    May I use Wikipedia content in my blog without violating the copyright law?
  • Response
    I would like to remove the blogger and designer links on the attribution bar at the bottom of a blogger page. I know its not good to remove it and usually i don't, but this is a page for a business so it needs to look clean and profesisonal..
  • Response
    Great views on that!
  • Response
    I want to transfer to a college that focuses on English and have a good Creative Writing program. I want to major in creative writing but don't know what college to transfer to..
  • Response
    Response: Michael Manis
    I need 2 set up wordpess through a webhost.... . i know i have to download wordpress but whats a good host to go with? and after i set up an account with a host, how difficult is the set up before I can begin building a site? and last but ...
  • Response
    "[...]In Which We Are The First To Leave The Party - Home - This Recording[...]"
  • Response
    http://www.garageworks707.com/
  • Response
    Response: papa murpheys
    http://www.papasurvey.xyz/
  • Response
    Response: gmail error 707
  • Response
    Response: Lilian Garcia
  • Response
    Response: Santo Binienda
    I found a great...
  • Response
    Download MyriadPro
  • Response
    Response: Raahe
    I found a great...

Reader Comments (4)

Excellent and useful article! Thanks for taking the time to post this.
March 7, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterfree standing closet
first party first thing never forgot
December 21, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterPokemon sun moon
best remedies for to grow
December 22, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterHair Growth
The great tips to know

PostPost a New Comment

Enter your information below to add a new comment.

My response is on my own website »
Author Email (optional):
Author URL (optional):
Post:
 
All HTML will be escaped. Hyperlinks will be created for URLs automatically.