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When Adam Sorenson, an English literature major at Mercy College, meets Evelyn Ann Thompson, an attractive graduate art student at the local museum where he works, his life takes an unexpected turn. Soon after they begin dating, Evelyn begins to prod Adam to make dramatic lifestyle changes for the sake of his physical appearance. Immediately, Evelyn's abrasive personality puts her at odds with Adam's former roommate and the roommate's fiancée, but schlubby and unlucky in love up to this point and flattered by the attention, Adam decides to do whatever it takes to keep Evelyn in his life.
This film was originally a play by Neil Labute. It was adapted into a film in 2003 with the original cast, which included Paul Rudd and Rachel Weisz.
This film provides examples of:
- Bitch in Sheep's Clothing: Evelyn
- Did Not Get the Girl: Adam in regards to Jenny. Prior to the start of the film, he spent 3 years pining for her (and Jenny admits that the attraction was actually reciprocated), but he never worked up the nerve to ask her out. Phillip has no qualms with scooping her up though.
- The film ends with Adam not staying with Evelyn either, since the entire relationship was a ruse for her thesis.
- Downer Ending
- Friend Versus Lover
- Hollywood Pudgy: Adam at the start of the film
- Jerkass Has a Point: Phillip is a massive jerk, but he is also the only one who shows concerning over Evelyn being a controlling girlfriend. He was right.
- Karma Houdini: Evelyn, unless you count no one showing up to her Art Gallery as karma.
- Love Dodecahedron: Adam is dating Evelyn, Jenny is dating Phillip, Adam and Jenny has some Unresolved Sexual Tension, and Evelyn and Phillip are implied to have Belligerent Sexual Tension.
- Meet Cute: Adam and Evelyn
- Took a Level In Jerkass: A really subtle case with Adam; Over the course of the film, due to Evelyn shaping him into societies version of a perfect man, Adam becomes more aggressive, deceitful, and selfish.
- Unresolved Sexual Tension: Adam and Jenny.
- Vitriolic Best Buds: Adam and Phillip.
- Your Cheating Heart: Adam and Jenny resolve their unrequited feelings by "burying it on the beach." When Evelyn fins out, she decides to kiss Phillip to get back at both of them.