Lebowski Fest New York 2014

There are many movies out there that contain lines of dialogue that are not only memorable but are ingrained in the collective conscious of civilization. Cult films in particular warrant constant recitation of lines and scene reenactment. The 1998 off-beat comedy classic The Big Lebowski is one such film and fans of the Coen Bros. gem flock every year to pay tribute at Lebowski Fest, a traveling event which celebrates the film. This weekend, the festivities took place in Manhattan and the Big Apple was treated to two days of fun, dress up, trivia, and bowling.

A two-day event, Lebowski Fest kicked off on August 22nd. That night consisted of a bowling party where fans knocked down pins at the popular bowling alley/lounge Lucky Strike. Fans not only bowled but participated in trivia of the film and a costume contest which featured some of the greatest Dudes, Walters, Maudes, and Jesi’ around. Not to mention, some of the more random and obscure characters. Photos were taken and memories were made. “Your roll, man.”

The second night, August 23rd, was a movie party, where fans could recite lines in sync with the film. This was the perfect event for fans of the movie who have been repeating lines from the film at home for years. Now, they had a chance to do it with a lot more fans in a larger venue. There was even live music. Evenings like this should happen more often. The Rocky Horror Picture Show does it, why can’t Lebowski?

Lebowski-themed merchandise was available for purchase including, t-shirts, magnets, posters, and books. Each item had cute significance with the film such as quotes and images. All of these items made for excellent mementos to help cement Lebowski Fest in your memory. They were evidence that you participated in the largest The Big Lebowski celebration on the planet.

Few films over the years have managed to instill such a strong sense of awe and genuine fun, not to mention manage to crack up an audience. The Big Lebowski is a strange and beautiful adventure about a man, The Dude (Jeff Bridges), a lovable loser who is at the center of a mistaken identity plot. He gets involved with violent German Nihilists, a disabled millionaire, a corrupt pornographer, and a highly sexual feminist. With an all-star cast consisting of John Goodman, Steve Buscemi, Julianne Moore, John Turturrow, Phillip Seymour Hoffman, David Huddleston, Tara Reid, and many more, The Big Lebowski is a movie like none other.

The dark and quirky Coen Bros. have masterfully combined strange humor with even stranger violence in this film. There are severed toes, aquatic marmots, killing of cars, White Russians, pot smoking, and of course, bowling. With films like Fargo, Raising Arizona, and The Hudsucker Proxy, the Coens are no strangers to dark comedy. In fact, the genre is their speciality. The Big Lebowski is no different and with Lebowski Fest being a staple in American culture since 2002 (the first Fest took place in Louisville, Kentucky and has been held in over 30 cities since), here’s hoping we see a lot more of these truly special events… man.

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