Coffee & Cigarettes

“Sure, it’s just two or three people bonding over the twin addictions of the title. But Jarmusch makes it a feast that plays like a haunting concept album.” — Peter Travers, Rolling Stone
Director: Jim Jarmusch
Year: 2003
Country: USA
Running time: 96 mins
USA

Screenplay: Jim Jarmusch
Photography: Frederick Elmes,
Ellen Kuras, Robby Müller, Tom DiCillo
Editors: Jay Rabinowitz, Melody London, Terry Katz, Jim Jarmusch
With: Bill Murray, Steve Buscemi, Iggy Pop, Tom Waits, Cate Blanchett, Steve Coogan, Alfred Molina, Roberto Benigni, Steven Wright, Wu-Tang Clan, Jack White, Meg White

Festivals: Venice, Toronto 2003; San Francisco 2004
“Consisting of 11 vignettes that indie icon Jim Jarmusch has written and directed sporadically since 1986 and finally assembled into a surprisingly cohesive whole, this dryly comic ode to wasting time elevates shooting the breeze to an art form. Roberto Benigni and Stephen Wright (was there ever a more mismatched lunch date?) woefully misunderstand each other and wind up switching identities, while RZA and GZA from Wu-Tang Clan discuss alternative medicine with Bill Murray… Iggy Pop and Tom Waits stumble through awkward silences and rue the fact that their diner’s jukebox features songs by neither; Jack and Meg of the White Stripes experiment with a Tesla coil; Cate Blanchett plays herself (sort of) as well as her estranged cousin in a meeting seething with mutual dislike; and Isaak de Bankole, cool incarnate in sunglasses and a sharp suit, tries to no avail to convince his best friend that he really, really doesn’t have a problem. In the film’s most memorable episode, the brilliant English actors Alfred Molina and Steve Coogan hilariously mock their celebrity status… Coffee & Cigarettes gives bad habits a good name.” — Steven Jenkins, San Francisco Film Festival.

“A droll, ironic look at two of our favorite addictions… Coffee & Cigarettes is basically great stuff, and though apparently the most lightweight material imaginable, the film actually manages to shed some light – and often some very funny light – on the inherent weirdness of the social interactions of all our daily lives. It turns out, of course, that we communicate even more when we’re not communicating.” — Peter Brunette, indieWIRE