A Night at the Roxbury

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A Night at the Roxbury
A night at the roxbury.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed by John Fortenberry
Produced by Amy Heckerling
Lorne Michaels
Written by Will Ferrell
Chris Kattan
Steve Koren
Starring Will Ferrell
Chris Kattan
Molly Shannon
Loni Anderson
Dan Hedaya
Jennifer Coolidge
Music by David Kitay
Cinematography Francis Kenny
Editing by Jay Kamen
Studio SNL Studios
Distributed by Paramount Pictures
Release dates October 2, 1998
Running time 81 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Budget $17,000,000 (estimated)
Box office $30,331,165[1][2]

A Night at the Roxbury is a 1998 American comedy film based on a recurring skit on television's long-running Saturday Night Live called "The Roxbury Guys." Saturday Night Live regulars Will Ferrell, Chris Kattan, Molly Shannon, and Colin Quinn star.

In the original sketches, Doug and Steve were often joined by that night's host, though this aspect of the sketch was not included in the film.

Other roles include Jennifer Coolidge as a police officer, Chazz Palminteri's uncredited role as gregarious night club impresario Mr. Benny Zadir, and Colin Quinn as his bodyguard. Ex-SNLer Mark McKinney has a cameo as a priest officiating a wedding.

Plot[edit]

Wealthy Yemeni-American brothers Steve (Will Ferrell) and Doug Butabi (Chris Kattan) enjoy frequenting nightclubs, where they bob their heads in unison to dance music (specifically Haddaway's hit song "What Is Love") and fail miserably at picking up women. Their dream is to party at the famous L.A. nightclub The Roxbury, a fabled nightclub where they are continually denied entrance by a hulking bouncer (Michael Clarke Duncan). By day, the brothers work at an artificial plant store owned by their wealthy father, Kamehl Butabi (Dan Hedaya). They spend most of their time goofing off, daydreaming about opening a club as cool as the Roxbury together, and Doug using credit card transactions as an excuse to hit on a phone approval operator. The store shares a wall with a lighting emporium owned by Fred Sanderson (Dwayne Hickman). Mr. Butabi and Mr. Sanderson hope that Steve and Emily (Molly Shannon), Sanderson's daughter, will marry, uniting the families and the businesses to form the first plant-lamp emporium.

After a day at the beach the brothers decide that tonight is the night they will finally get into the Roxbury. Returning home, Doug gets into a heated argument with their father about going out clubbing instead of staying home. Their father has planned a dinner party with Emily and her parents. The angered Mr. Butabi then denies them access to their BMW car and their cell phones. They are given enormous cell phones by their mother (Loni Anderson) and allowed use of the fake-plant store's delivery van, they are quickly rejected by the doorman (Michael Clarke Duncan). After discovering they might bribe their way into the club, the brothers drive around looking for an ATM. They get into a fender-bender with Richard Grieco (playing himself) and to avoid a lawsuit, Grieco uses his fame to get them into the popular club. There they meet the owner of the Roxbury, Benny Zadir (Chazz Palminteri), who listens to their idea for a nightclub of their own. He likes them and sets up a meeting with them for the next day. The brothers also meet a pair of women at the Roxbury: Vivica (Gigi Rice) and Cambi (Elisa Donovan), who see them talking to Zadir and think that the brothers are rich.

On the way to the afterparty at Mr. Zadir's house, the brothers annoy his driver and bodyguard Dooey (Colin Quinn) by making him stop to buy fluffy whip and making jokes about sleeping with his parents. As revenge, the next day Dooey denies them entry into Zadir's office for their meeting. He tells the brothers that Zadir was drunk out of his mind last night and does not know who they are. In reality, Zadir really wants to see them, but does not have their contact information. The girls break up with the Butabi brothers after realizing they are not really wealthy. The brothers fight and Doug moves out of their shared bedroom and into the guest house. Meanwhile Steve is forced into an engagement with Emily. The wedding is held in the backyard of the Butabi residence, but is interrupted by Doug. Having gone on a fluffy-whip-fueled bender, he interrupts the wedding, reconciles with his brother, and the wedding is called off. Afterwards, Richard Grieco (a guest at the wedding) talks to Mr. Butabi to help him understand that Steve was not ready for marriage, and that Butabi is too hard on Doug.

The movie ends as the Butabi brothers happen upon a hot new club. The building is unique in that the exterior is constructed to resemble the interior of a nightclub, and the interior resembles a street — this was an idea pitched by Doug and Steve to Zadir earlier in the movie. Attempting to enter, they are surprised to find their names on the VIP list. In addition, Zadir reveals that to reward their idea, he has made them part-owners of the club. Their new-found success comes full circle when they meet two women in the club: Doug's phone representative from the credit card company (Meredith Scott Lynn) and a police officer (Jennifer Coolidge) whom Steve earlier flirted with while getting a ticket.

Cast[edit]

Soundtrack[edit]

Night at the Roxbury
Soundtrack album by Various Artists
Released September 29, 1998
Genre Dancepop, House, Electro-Pop, Disco
Length 60:40
Label DreamWorks
Producer David Kitay

Released on CD.[3]

  1. "What Is Love" – Haddaway (3:35)
  2. "Bamboogie (Radio Edit)" – Bamboo (3:15)
  3. "Make That Money (Roxbury Remix)" – Robi Rob's Club World (3:51)
  4. "Disco Inferno" – Cyndi Lauper (3:18)
  5. "Do Ya Think I'm Sexy" – N-Trance featuring Rod Stewart (3:25)
  6. "Pop Muzik" – 3rd Party (3:05)
  7. "Insomnia (Monster Mix)" – Faithless (3:45)
  8. "Be My Lover (Club Mix)" – La Bouche (5:35)
  9. "This Is Your Night" – Amber (3:52)
  10. "Beautiful Life" – Ace of Base (3:11)
  11. "Where Do You Go (Ocean Drive Mix)" – No Mercy (7:21)
  12. "A Little Bit of Ecstasy" – Jocelyn Enriquez (3:59)
  13. "What is Love? (Refreshmento Extro Radio Mix)" – Haddaway
  14. "Careless Whisper" – Tamia (5:27)

Reception[edit]

The film was almost universally panned by critics, garnering an 11% rating on Rotten Tomatoes, with the consensus that A Night at the Roxbury "has the same problems as the worst SNL movies: one-note characters and plots unreasonably stretched to feature length runtime".[4] Anita Gates of The New York Times acknowledged the film's appeal, but reasoned that it was "a lot like the brothers themselves: undeniably pathetic but strangely lovable. Still, do you really want to spend an hour and a half with them in a dark room?"[5] Roger Ebert observed that "the sad thing about A Night at the Roxbury is that the characters are in a one-joke movie, and they're the joke... It's the first comedy I've attended where you feel that to laugh would be cruel to the characters."[6] The film has since found major popularity on home video and television since its release, and despite its cold reception remains one of the best known SNL films. This is partly due to being Will Ferrell's first movie in a leading role, and his later popularity as a major film comedian.

References[edit]

  1. ^ 'LA Times' – Studios See $$ in Less-Than-Worthy 'SNL' Film Spinoffs at the Wayback Machine (archived May 9, 2006)
  2. ^ "A Night at the Roxbury (1998) – Box Office Mojo". Boxofficemojo.com. 1998-11-13. Retrieved 2014-03-07. 
  3. ^ "Various—A Night At The Roxbury (Music from the Motion Picture)". Discogs. Retrieved 30 January 2012. 
  4. ^ "A Night at the Roxbury". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved 2014-03-07. 
  5. ^ "A Night at the Roxbury - FILM REVIEW; A Lucky Break for the Terminally Uncool". New York Times. October 2, 1998. 
  6. ^ "A Night at the Roxbury". Chicago Sun-Times. October 2, 1998. 

External links[edit]