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The Heartbreak Kid

The Heartbreak Kid(1972)

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In New York City, Lenny Cantrow, a self-absorbed sporting goods salesman with a highly inflated opinion of himself, meets gawky Lila Kolodny at a singles bar. When Lenny discovers that the ingenious Lila regards her virginity as a prize to be awarded only to her husband, Lenny proposes. After the couple is married in a traditional Jewish wedding ceremony, they leave for their honeymoon in Miami Beach driving Lenny's two-seater sports car. On the way there, Lenny is irritated by his bride's penchant for singing off-key. On the night they consummate their marriage, Lenny finds his ardor diminished by Lila's constant need for reassurance of her sexual prowess and her desire for chocolate bars after sex. The next day, as Lila, her mouth smeared with remnants of an egg salad sandwich she is devouring, dreamily counts the next forty or fifty years they will be spending together, Lenny begins to suspect that he has made a major mistake. After checking into their honeymoon hotel in Miami Beach, Lenny becomes impatient with Lila's attempts to comb her unruly hair and goes to the beach without her. There he meets the gazelle-like, blonde Kelly Corcoran who playfully begins to flirt with him. Lenny's state of rapture is abruptly shattered by Lila's grating voice, calling to him to join her. After roasting poolside in the sun all day, Lila develops a painful sunburn. Lenny, disgusted that she is going to "puff up" and ruin their honeymoon, leaves Lila writhing in pain in their hotel room while he goes to the bar for a drink. There he once again meets Kelly, who insouciantly inquires if he will be at the beach the next morning. Returning to his hotel room to find Lila smeared in a white ointment, Lenny insists she stay in the room and out of the sun the next day. Rushing to the beach early the next morning, Lenny frolics in the ocean with Kelly, who is amused when he admits that he is on his honeymoon. After Kelly informs Lenny that the family is moving to another hotel because her wealthy WASP father Duane does not like the "element" at their present hotel, Lenny coerces Kelly into agreeing to have a drink with him at the Corcoran's new hotel that night. Lying to Lila that he is meeting an old army buddy for a drink and will take her to dinner later, Lenny meets Kelly at the bar and confides that his marriage is over because she is the girl he has been searching for his entire life. Bemused, Kelly informs Lenny that her father detests him, but nevertheless insists that he join the family for dinner. Meanwhile, Lila dresses for dinner, and when Lenny fails to appear, is reduced to eating candy bars and watching television. Over dinner, against her father's wishes, Kelly invites Lenny to join the family fishing the next day aboard a friend's yacht. Upon returning home late that evening, Lenny lies to Lila that he missed dinner because he and his army buddy were sideswiped by a truck while driving in his friend's car, and that he has to appear in court at 7 a.m. the next morning to sign affidavits. After a day at sea with Kelly, Lenny rushes to his hotel room to change his clothes, saying that his friend has been hospitalized and that he feels obligated to visit his family, but that he will return later to take Lila to dinner. Lenny then hurries to meet Corcoran. Proclaiming that he wants to "lay his cards on the table," Lenny announces that he has fallen in love with Kelly, but there is a slight complication, because he was just married five days ago. Becoming apoplectic, Corcoran declares that he would not grant permission for Lenny to marry Kelly, even if someone "hung him from a tree and put a lit bomb in his mouth." Refusing to take no for an answer, Lenny declares that he is coming to see the Corcorans in Minnesota as soon as he gets a divorce. Afterward, Lenny takes Lila to an expensive lobster house for dinner, and as she crunches on the lobster shells, Lenny begins to discuss the transitory nature of life. Thinking that Lenny is trying to tell her he is dying, Lila becomes concerned, forcing Lenny to announce loudly that he wants out of their marriage, thus earning the consternation of the restaurant patrons who have overheard their conversation. Sickened, Lila begs to go to the restroom and throw up, but Lenny refuses to let her go and instead blithely suggests that as a consolation, they "have dinner together sometime." After a hastily expedited divorce, Lenny ventures into the frigid Minnesota winter to find Kelly. He locates her on her college campus, where she is walking with her boyfriend, the captain of every sports team on campus. Kelly rebuffs Lenny, but when he begins to follow her around campus, she tries to appease him by saying that she is flattered that he divorced his wife, but she is now preoccupied with school. When Lenny blusters sarcastically, Kelly becomes intrigued and warns him that her boyfriend will beat him up. Lenny vanquishes the boyfriend by pretending that he is a narcotics agent, sending him and his friends scurrying away. Kelly then invites Lenny to come with her to her family's summer home in the mountains, and the next night, Lenny seduces her in his motel room. Although Corcoran loathes Lenny, he agrees to meet him for Kelly's sake. Over dinner at the Corcoran house, as Lenny tries to win the family over by sputtering inanities about the wholesomeness of the vegetables, Corcoran sits in stony silence. Corcoran realizes that he has met his match when he offers Lenny $25,000 to stay away from his daughter and Lenny refuses the offer. Kelly and Lenny are wed in a large, formal Christian wedding, and at the reception, after trying to make small talk to the wealthy, conservative guests, Lenny finds himself relegated to sitting on a couch with two children, who, bored with his conversation, walk away, leaving him alone in the crowd.