Let me be clear about something: There's a specific art to choosing the perfect movies to watch at sleepovers. And back in the '90s, before the convenience of streaming sites and a USB stick loaded with classics, there was nothing but the trusty video rental store, or the R-rated collection of a generous older sibling, to rely on for finding such films. But somehow, despite all those challenges, there's still certain movies you definitely watched at sleepovers in the '90s. I know this, because I spent much of my youth conducting research for this very article by attending a lot of sleepovers and watching the same movies over and over again. And guys, they were awesome.
Back in the '90s, a great sleepover movie had to have a certain vibe to it. It had to appeal to the massively girly vibe of a room full of teenage girls. It usually also helped if the movie was a little bit too old for most of us to be watching, which made dirty comedies and horrors an absolute must. Oh, and it definitely made the cut if it happened to star a cute male actor or had the ability to make any of us cry even a single tear.
I definitely watched all of these movies at sleepovers more times than I can even remember. And I reckon, in all likelihood, so did you.
1. Never Been Kissed
Nobody wanted to be "Josie Grossie" anymore, though I'm sure that a lot of us felt like we were. And this movie was the perfect catharsis for those feelings.
2. The Craft
You'd watch it right before trying, and failing, to do "light as a feather, stiff as a board" with your besties. It'll work one of these days, guys.
3. Spice World: The Movie
It was the perfect movie for impromptu sing-alongs and for confirming who exactly out of your friends was each respective Spice Girl. For the record, I always wanted to be Scary, but got repeatedly assigned as Sporty.
4. The Blair Witch Project
And it would split your group 50-50, between those who thought it was boring and those who definitely could not get to sleep afterward.
5. Romeo + Juliet
Cue mass swooning, hot tears, and thorough play-by-plays of what everyone's wedding to Leonardo DiCaprio would look like.
You were probably way too young to be watching it, but that didn't stop you and your friends obsessing over this movie and taking turns to say "Candyman" into the mirror five times.
7. American Pie
It was silly as hell, absolute filth, and it made for the perfect sleepover comedy.
Cue even more swooning, hot tears, and arguments over whether or not Rose could have — and should have — shared that damn door with Jack.
9. 10 Things I Hate About You
If Kat Stratford's badass ways weren't enough to unite you and your besties, then Heath Ledger's unbridled dreaminess definitely was.
10. Empire Records
And there was always at least one girl who spent the entire movie declaring that she was going to work at the local record store and become just as cool as Liv Tyler (she never did).
11. Billboard Dad
Or, for that matter, any movie from the Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen oeuvre. America thanks you for your service, ladies.
If I ever attended a sleepover in which we didn't watch Clueless at least once, then I certainly don't remember it.
13. She's All That
But truly, everyone knew that Laney was way cooler and prettier before the makeover and would not shut up about that fact.
It was the "chick flick" that felt totally naughty to watch. It also gave you and your friends dark inspiration for some new, edgy vocab for weeks to come.
15. Cruel Intentions
Another utterly dirty movie that you somehow managed to get past someone's parents. With the added bonus of that shot of Ryan Phillippe's derriere — which yes, you might have freeze-framed.
16. Reality Bites
It was a total grown-up movie and gave everyone a chance to reflect on who they were going to grow up to be. Except that everyone's ambition was likely just "Winona Ryder."
It was scary, hilarious, fun, and smart, and it was easily one of the ultimate sleepover movies for those exact reasons. It had everything. Including Skeet Ulrich.
18. Romy And Michele's High School Reunion
And, be honest, a couple of you even vowed to wear Romy and Michele style dresses to Prom together, right? I knew it.
19. The Faculty
We were enticed by the teen drama and body horror of it, but we were absolutely enthralled by Josh nobody-should-be-allowed-to-be-this-cute Hartnett. Hot. Damn.
OK, that's it. I'm calling for pizza and setting up the VHS. Go call your mom and tell her you're staying at my house tonight — we've got some movies we need to revisit right this second, ladies.