Winter is upon us. Hanukkah and Christmas have passed and 2018 awaits; only days away. Whether you need a little movie magic to help you get into the spirit, get over 2017 or just get through midnight on New Year’s Eve, we’ve got you covered. These five New Year’s-centric films have what you need. Here they are in no particular order.
When Harry Met Sally (1989)
You can’t miss with any season in this timeless comedy, but the biggest stuff happens on New Year’s Eve. Some of the sexual politics are outdated, but forgivably. Meg Ryan and Billy Crystal are both hilarious and heartbreaking, and it’s the perfect feel good movie for the end of your year. If you’re in a feel-good kind of NYE mood, it wouldn’t hurt to check out An Affair to Remember, Bridget Jones’s Diary, or the most literal…. New Year’s Eve.
The Poseidon Adventure (1972)
If you’re feeling like disaster is upon you, perhaps an epic boat wreck will do the trick. Based on the book by Paul Gallico, this disaster movie of all disaster movies takes place as the clock strikes midnight on New Year’s Eve and an ocean liner turns upside down. It’s so good, and Gene Hackman is amazing.
Sunset Boulevard (1950)
This is one of the best New Year’s movies of all time, but let’s face it… it’s one of the best movies of all time. One of the last true film noirs, this film focuses on a NYE party for two, dashed hopes, desperate search for connection, and the best underwater shot in cinema. The brilliant Billy Wilder directed this and another holiday time heartbreak, The Apartment. Watch them both if you’re in the mood to be in a mood.
200 Cigarettes (1999)
This was made in the late nineties with a very large, very nineties cast; but it’s set in 1981. It’s what I’m going to call a ‘romp’ through a NYE from the perspectives of different people, all around one night and one party. It’s got more edge than a rom-com and fewer tears than a drama. It’s fun and the soundtrack is good.
Boogie Nights (1997)
I just couldn’t leave this off the list. If you want drama and sadness and desperation and drug-fueled bad decision making, this is your NYE film. It’s not specifically ABOUT New Year’s Eve, but there’s a really big, tide-turning event at a NYE party that cannot be ignored. Plus, this is just one of the best movies ever made. You could point to any performance in this movie, but Julianne Moore, Phillip Seymour Hoffman and William H. Macy hurt me every single time. Watch it any time… with adults.
Ghostbusters II (1989)
I couldn’t let it go. I’m a Ghostbusters fan, and the sequel doesn’t get it’s due. It concludes on NYE in New York City, ringing in the new year with the Statue of Liberty, literally. It’s funny, it’s light, it’s got an ancient painting monster, a baby, rivers of slime and Bill Murray. You just can’t go wrong.