A quiet, unassuming man begins to change in a major way as a result of meeting a new, art-student girlfriend, and his friends are unsettled by the transformation.


Neil LaBute


Neil LaBute (play), Neil LaBute (screenplay)
1 nomination. See more awards »





Complete credited cast:
Gretchen Mol ... Jenny
Paul Rudd ... Adam Sorenson
Rachel Weisz ... Evelyn Ann Thompson
Frederick Weller ... Phillip


While visiting an art museum, a nerdy college student named Adam meets an iconoclastic artist named Evelyn and is instantly smitten. As their relationship develops, she gradually encourages Adam to change in various ways that surprise his older friends, Jenny and Philip. However, as events progress, Evelyn's antics become darker and darker as her influence begins to twist Adam and his friends in hurtful ways. Written by Kenneth Chisholm (kchishol@rogers.com)

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Seduction Is An Art


Comedy | Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language and some sexuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »

Did You Know?


Paul Rudd lost 25 pounds for the film. See more »


In the park scene where Adam and Jenny kiss, Adam's nose looks normal, but at this point he hasn't had the surgery yet. The surgery happens in the next scene. See more »


Adam: It's not funny.
Phillip: Yes, it is. I mean, it's not that funny that wives get beat up, but the fact that you look like one, that I find hilarious!
See more »


Referenced in Dinner for Five: Episode #2.12 (2003) See more »


Almost Ideal Eyes
Written by Elvis Costello
Performed by Elvis Costello and The Attractions
Courtesy of Warner Bros. Records, Inc.
By Arrangement with Warner Special Products
See more »

User Reviews

The Art Of Manipulation
24 August 2010 | by ChrysanthepopSee all my reviews

'The Shape Of Things' gave me the impression of being an unconventional romantic comedy. It starts that way and pretty much stays that way in the first half hour. But, in a very subtle way, director LaBute, as though peeling the story, gradually reveals its darkness. The movie gets darker and darker by the minute and the ending is unsettling as Evelyn's revelation is exposed like an unexpected punch in the stomach. This also makes one question the 'little sacrifices' they make to satisfy their partners and the extent one is willing to go. LaBute has based the film on his play and it seems to have translated well on screen. With fine cinematography, tight editing, soulful score and solid writing, 'The Shape of Things' is certainly well made but what would it have been without its outstanding performances. Rachel Weisz is marvelous as Evelyn the artist. It can be described as a tour du force performance. Being more specific would risk revealing spoilers. Paul Rudd brilliantly suits the role of Adam (the names Adam and Eve(lyn) are an obvious reference that may define their relationship, depending on the viewer's perspective). Frederick Weller is great as Rudd's caddish friend and Gretchen Mol is very good. 'The Shape of Things' is certainly not your average rom-com. In fact, it isn't a rom com at all.

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USA | France | UK



Release Date:

16 May 2003 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Shape of Things See more »


Box Office


$4,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$173,246, 11 May 2003

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »

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