Every time that I watch House Party, I’m instantly reminded of sweet, nostalgic college days. I used to have the House Party movie collection, and all of my close friends would come over and we would watch it on my couch. Or sometimes they would borrow without asking. Actually, last time that it was “borrowed”, I don’t think I got it back. Assholes… luckily I have VUDU now, so I generally stream everything that I want that way.
Anyway, this movie is definitely one of my favorites, and is the perfect rewatchable. The masterful thing about this film, and why it makes “Mark’s list of top 15 Must-Watch Cultural Movies” is that it’s uniquely created for black denizens from all socioeconomic classes, and that deviates from the what the norm was in 1990 for teen sex comedies, which were usually set in white middle-class suburbs. (See: Ferris Bueller’s Day Off) It’s led by two guys who are kind of caricatural in the rappers Kid and Play, but to their credit, brilliantly lead the movie, with the help of ancillary characters in Bilal (Martin Lawrence), Sidney (Tisha Campbell) and the resident of the theme of this film location Sharane (A.J. Johnson)
So, if you recall, Sharane was the chick that that Kid and Play were both insatiably feening over through the duration of the movie (until Kid found a willing plan B in Sidney which we have to have that sloppy seconds discussion later). Anyway, Sharane’s apartment is featured in three scenes in the movie; When Sidney picks her up to go to the party, when Kid drops her off, and (spoiler alert) when Play and Bilal come to ask her if she will help them pay to bail Kid out of jail.
But the most pivotal scene was when Kid is at the doorstep asking for a kiss and she denies him saying “Don’t beg… next time.” In order to find this location, I reached out to the Location Manager for the location, and he told me which housing project in Los Angeles that the scenes were filmed.
Oh I forgot to mention that Sharane lived in the projects.
When I checked my google maps, I discovered the place was literally minutes away from my place. Living in Chinatown at the time, I went to go check it out. Granted, I didn’t know where exactly Sharane’s apartment was, and it was nighttime so I decided to come back the following weekend.
Back at the Kulture Cave, I watched House Party, and analyzed where exactly the apartment was, and compared it to some of the images that I was pulling from google maps. The give-away was when the scene that Martin Lawrence yelled up to Sharane’s window, intent upon getting her to help bail Kid out of jail and he ends up running away because her Uncle Fester pulls back the curtains.
Upon finding it, that Saturday, I dragged my fiancé to the hood and we took some pictures. Not much has really changed since 1990. The basketball court is mostly the same. It did feel really cool though, walking the path that Kid and Sidney walked together to her house.
Also, that musical score was so damn good and fitting.
If you haven’t watched this movie before, I strongly recommend that you do, or if you have go watch it again. It is delightfully and expectedly unpretentious, and memorable.
We wrote a piece honoring the 30th anniversary of the movie that you can check out here.
Location: 1300 Cardinal Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012. Go to the back of the complex, and you will find Sharane’s apartment at the intersection of Bloom Street and Cardinal Street. Across the street from the playground, between buildings 22 and 23, take the sidewalk, make a right and her apartment will be the first one on your left. If you continue walking past her apartment you will see the basketball courts, via the “I don’t care if he wants my best friend, he’s mine” path.