Meet the Parents (2000)

 

Screenplay Genre: Comedy / Romance

Movie Time: 108 minutes

1. INCITING INCIDENT

Male nurse, Gaylord “Greg” Focker (Ben Stiller) decides to propose to his girlfriend Pam Byrnes (Teri Polo), using the children in her class to form a sign that reads MARRY ME PAM. However, when the kids finally create the sign, Pam gets a phone call from her sister who informs Pam that she is getting married. Greg is forced to abort his proposal, and soon learns that he will have to meet Pam's parents. (00:6:00)

2. LOCK IN (End of Act One)

Greg and Pam arrive at her parents' house, and Pam frantically tries to prep Greg to meet her father by tossing Greg's cigarettes onto the roof and reminding him they can't reveal they are living together. Greg tries to assure Pam that everything will be all right. After an very awkward introduction to Jack (Rober De Niro) and Dina (Blythe Danner), Greg steps inside the Byrnes home, and as the door closes behind him, it is quite clear he is in for a very long weekend. (00:11:00)

3. FIRST CULMINATION (Midpoint)

After scouring the neighborhood in search of the Byrnes’ cat Mr. Jinx, Greg finds a similar looking cat at the animal shelter and decides to try to pass it off as the real Jinx. He returns to the Brynes triumphant and reveals Jinx to the entire family, redeeming himself for all the trouble he has caused thus far and finally getting back on Jack's good side, much to the relief of Pam.(1:13:45)

4. MAIN CULMINATION (End of Act Two)

Following a frantic, high-speed race home from the rehearsal dinner, everyone discovers that the imposter Jinx has destroyed the wedding dress and all of the decorations. All of Greg's lies finally come to light, and he’s forced to leave, driving off defeated as Jack comforts Pam. (1:27:25)

5. THIRD ACT TWIST

After being forcibly removed from an airplane and taken into custody, Greg is rescued by Jack. The two grill each other before finally agreeing to a tentative truce. Jack allows Greg to marry Pam, and once again Greg is back in the “Circle of Trust.” (1:36:06)


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