Author: Justin Ware
Genre: Romantic Comedy
Writer’s Potential: 7
Logline:An unlucky-in-love geek joins a group devoted to the artificial creation of one-night stands — by forcing women into adrenaline-pumping situations.
Comments:To start, Adrenaline has a great premise with huge comic possibilities. The dialogue is consistently witty, and the slapstick set-pieces work well conceptually, although some (like the skydiving bit) go on long enough to feel laborious. Fitten and Courtney get just enough development to avoid being clichés. However, it would be nice to see them taken a little further — maybe Courtney isn’t as perfect as she seems or Fitten has more specific sexual frustrations. More importantly, the gang of adrenalists don’t have much depth (including Chip, despite his significance in the story).
What I kept waiting for, from the introduction of the adrenalists on, was an explanation for why all these people have banded together…to get Chip laid. There’s not much indication that the others do more than assist in his conquests. In fact, in the third act it’s revealed that one of them is married and one is divorced. Why did these guys join up? What do they stand to gain? I thought it would head in a direction where Fitten makes the others realize they’re being used, generating conflict and comedy as the teamwork dissolves and each of them tries to manipulate the plays to get the girl for themselves, for their own specific goals (e.g., making an uninterested wife jealous). It would offer more variety than the gags that exist to humiliate Fitten.
A development like that would also solve the problematic third act. In its current state, the surprise reveal forces Courtney to radically shift her personality. It’s impossible to believe someone initially portrayed as intelligent and articulate (and discriminating when it comes to men) would do a 180 into Stupidville, which makes the third act frustrating despite the twist and happy ending. If the conflict, and Chip’s decision to “woo” Courtney, came more from a desire to get rid of Fitten (who has destroyed his team), it could provide a similar surprise ending — in which Fitten fights for Courtney, which makes her soften and fall for him, only to learn this was Chip’s plan all along. This one relies more on the characters we know and care about, and less on believing first that Courtney has turned into an idiot, then that she’d have set up her own elaborate plan to humiliate Chip, which strains credibility.