On New Year's Eve, no one wants to be alone. On this night in 1981, several different groups of young desperate people begin a journey from around New York City to a big party hosted by Monica (Martha Plimpton) and new friend Hillary (Catherine Kellner). As the hours pass and no one shows, Monica begins to unravel. She must bribe Hilary to stay with the promise of a clear shot at Monica's old boyfriend, Eric (Brian McCardie). Eric, at that moment is drinking in a nightclub with his new girlfriend, Bridget (Nicole Parker) and her friend Caitlyn (Angela Featherstone). When Bridget learns the host of the party is Eric's ex-girlfriend, she moves in on the bartender (Ben Affleck). Another group consists of two teenagers from Long Island, Monica's cousin Val (Christina Ricci) and Stephie (Gaby Hoffmann). The two get lost on the way when they run into a pair of punk rockers, Tom (Casey Affleck) and Dave (Guillermo Diaz). In a nearby diner, Lucy (Courtney Love) commiserates with her best friend Kevin (Paul Rudd) who has just been dumped by performance artist Ellie (Janeane Garofalo) so she could move in with her therapist. As they bar hop it slowly dawns upon the two that they could be more than friends. Elsewhere, new acquaintances Jack (Jay Mohr) and Cindy (Kate Hudson) are celebrating more than the new year. Cindy lost her virginity to Jack the night before, though is afraid Jack is with her out of sense of obligation. Now if only everyone can get to the party by midnight. Linking the different stories is the disco cabbie (Dave Chappelle) in whose cab the party never stops.