Adam (2009)

This is not your typical romantic comedy. First, it fits better in the space between drama and comedy. Then second, because it doesn’t have either the typical story or the typical ending. It is a story about two people, each of whom has something that the other needs at a particular moment in time. They fully devote themselves to the giving of what they have to the other person, to the best of their ability, and then at one point it becomes clear that they must part. But they are both better for their time together. The perfect romance that doesn’t pan out. Both sides win, no one is bitter. You almost never see it–not in real life, not in fiction, not in film.

Adam is awkward, deadpan, and says things that are true, but you really shouldn’t say them. A lot of the social landscape is occurring well above his head, and while he knows that, he has trouble responding differently. For example, his father dies very early in the movie, and he appears to have little or no response to it, other than crossing “Dad’s Chores” off his to-do list. Beth moves into an apartment in his building, and they begin a friendship with each other. He would like it to be more. So he tells her he feels sexually attracted to her. Which makes her bolt. So he tells her–he has Asperger’s syndrome. Then they progress into a relationship that makes sense for him, and it also does for her, given the circumstances of her life and that she needs someone who is safe and won’t cheat on her or lie to her. He also isn’t quite capable of the intensity of emotion that she needs, but that is okay for a time. The ending could be bittersweet, but it isn’t. It is sweet and nice.

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Filed under Movie Review, Romantic Drama

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