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54 (1998, Ryan Phillippe, Salma Hayek)

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As Manhattan heads for the 1980s, Shane O’Shea (RYAN PHILLIPPE) pressures his friends into visiting notorious nightspot Studio 54. At the door, only Shane is allowed in, and club owner Steve Rubell (MIKE MYERS) offers him a job as a busboy. He accepts, leaving his New Jersey home to move in with colleague Greg (BRECKIN MEYER) and Greg’s wife, hat-check girl and aspiring singer Anita (SALMA HAYEK). O’Shea soon acclimatises to the club’s values of promiscuity and tax avoidance, and watches as Greg does the same, dealing drugs while side-stepping Rubell’s regular attempts at seduction.

Club regulars Julie Black (NEVE CAMPBELL) and Disco Dottie (ELLEN ALBERTINI DOW) are equally debauched, and while their hedonism is legendary it is out of place with the new morality which looks disapprovingly down on the Studio, its inhabitants, and the man who made it happen…

54 is a fascinating exercise in Hollywood hypocrisy and while few audiences could want to emulate the characters’ collective narcosis, the most compelling character is Rubell, who appears in a series of cameos and knockabout sketches. While not a historical reflection of the truth (Rubell’s partner Ian Schrager is written out, as is their gaol sentence), the film is balanced by a great sense of period, with the excellent soundtrack and production design blending with a substantial cast of Studio 54 regulars ranging from MICHAEL YORK to porn Olympian RON JEREMY.

production details
USA | 106 minutes | 1998

Writer and Director: Mark Christopher

cast
Ryan Phillippe as Shane O’Shea
Salma Hayek as Anita Randazzo
Breckin Meyer as Greg Randazzo
Mike Myers as Steve Rubell
Neve Campbell as Julie Black
Sherry Stringfield as Viv
Sela Ward as Billie Auster
Daniel Lapaine as Marc the Doorman
Erika Alexander as Ciel
Heather Matarazzo as Grace O’Shea
Aemilia Robinson as Kelly O’Shea
Skipp Sudduth as Harlan O’Shea
Mark Ruffalo as Ricko
Lauren Hutton as Liz Vangelder
Arthur J. Nascarella as IRS Agent
John Hines as IRS Agent
Barbara Radecki as TV Host
Sean Sullivan as Andy Warhol
Victor Sutherland as DJ
Coati Mundi as DJ
Sheryl Crow as VIP
Heidi Klum as VIP
Donald Trump as VIP
Sophie Rousseau as VIP
Cindy Crawford as VIP
Georgina Grenville as VIP
Victor Browne as VIP
Noam Jenkins as Romeo
Cameron Mathison as Atlanta
Jay Goede as Buck
Patrick Taylor as Tarzan
Michael Pitt as Dance Student
Ellen Albertini Dow as Disco Dottie
Vieslav Krystyan as Photographer

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