'Fat Girls' Synopsis

FAT GIRLS is a crowd-pleasing comedy centering on gay teenager Rodney Miller trying to survive his last days of high school in a small, not exactly tolerant, Texas town. Aided by his 300-pound best friend, Sabrina, and her Cuban refugee boyfriend, Rudy, Rodney just might find that inner fat girl he knew was a part of him all along.

The film opens with Rodney lying in bed staring upwards. He's not alone, but his bedmate is covered and we can't quite see who it is. In voice-over he tells us that he is a FAT GIRL and always has been. It is a hard concept to explain, he says. Being a FAT GIRL is more a state of mind, he tells us, an unspoken club. You don't even have to be fat to be one or even a girl for that matter. Rodney then invites us on his journey to discover his own inner FAT GIRL.

The journey begins, in flashback, some time earlier, backstage during the intermission of his high school's production of "The Odd Couple," where Rodney and his co-star in the production, Ted, the quarterback of the football team, are masturbating each other in the wardrobe room, because (as Rodney tells it) the "straight" Ted isn't getting enough sex from his girlfriend. However, Rodney's best friend, Sabrina, who also happens to be the stage manager, quickly breaks this up. Rodney divides the world up between those who are FAT GIRLS and those who are not. Sabrina, he tells us, is a true FAT GIRL -- inside and out, while hunky Ted isn't one at all and never will be.

After they take their bows at the end of the performance, Rodney begins a slow awkward roll home on his roller blades. He's accosted by a group of good old boys who call him over and offer him a beer - which he definitely should have refused. After Rodney figures out what is in the beer, he proceeds to throw up all over one of the villain's cowboy boots. It seems like things can only get worse, but then Bobby appears. In voice-over Rodney explains that the handsome Bobby is his cousin, and in protecting him, he's really only protecting the family name. Also, he says, Bobby is definitely not a FAT GIRL.

Bobby drops Rodney off at home. Inside, we meet Rodney's mother, a receptionist at the church and the kind of Christian lady who serves food with religious themes, like Angel Hair pasta and Jesus Jambalaya. His father, who runs the family plumbing business, is a silent, gaseous presence, stretched out on the couch in front of the television. Rodney explains (with the help of an old home movie) that his Dad always wanted a football-playing son, but got a kid who liked to dress up and put on make-up instead.

Rodney goes to his room and puts in a porn tape.

The next day at Martin Luther King Jr. High School, Rodney and Sabrina make their way
to the cafeteria. They bring their lunch to an empty table and are soon joined by Rudy Jackson, a bespectacled Cuban refugee, who seems to take a shine to Sabrina. The trio is interrupted by Katie Chin, the school's peppy cheerleader type (and Ted's girlfriend) who announces the upcoming graduation dance. Sabrina asks Rodney who he plans to go with, thinking that they'll probably go together, but Rodney has other plans, namely, the blonde and super cool Joey, a new arrival from England. Meanwhile, realizing that Sabrina is without a date, Rudy watches her leeringly.

Now, Mr. Cox, Rodney's favorite teacher, a nice guy and "total FAT GIRL" arrives at their table to enlist the three to volunteer at the Senior Citizen center. The friends reluctantly comply. Mr. Cox exits and then Rodney sees his chance with Joey as the new student crosses to the food line. After introductions, Rodney works up the nerve to ask Joey to the dance, telling him that he figures they might have something in common. Joey likes the idea of freaking out the school and agrees. Rodney, of course, is thrilled.

But soon it's back to humiliation when Rodney's classroom speech about anti-gay discrimination is interrupted when he is summoned to the guidance office. The counselor asks Rodney what he plans to do after graduation. Rodney shares his dream of Broadway stardom, but the counselor thinks Rodney should be more practical and think about how to support a family. When Rodney explains he doesn't want a family, only a boyfriend, the counselor sends him on his way with a Christian pamphlet for alternative lifestyles and a fistful of condoms.

Rodney and Sabrina buy tickets for the graduation dance. Afterwards, they run into Tina, Bobby's slutty girlfriend. Tina asks Rodney if she can take one of the condoms, and then she and Rodney get into a disagreement about the size of Bobby's endowment.

Later, Rodney, Sabrina and Rudy walk along the railroad tracks on their way to meet Mr. Cox at the Senior Center. Mr. Cox tells Rodney he wants to introduce him to a woman named Mildred, one of the residents. Mildred turns out to be a spunky old girl with a Broadway past. Rodney is impressed by this and Mr. Cox encourages Rodney to sing his self-styled "number" for the ex-performer.

During the ride home, Rodney comes to find out that Mr. Cox has returned to their small Texas town to take care of an ailing mother. Rodney makes no secret of his disdain for the town and his longing to escape to New York. Mr. Cox, a former resident of NYC, encourages Rodney and tells him how much he'll love it there.

Rodney comes home to the news that his father has died during a sexual encounter with a "midget woman." Rodney seems less disturbed by his father's passing than the group of church folks gathered in his living room.

Later, when his mother comes to his room to comfort him, he can't quite convince her that he's not that upset, given the obvious issues with his father. The more she tries to comfort him, the more he's amused. He tries, somewhat unsuccessfully, to stifle his giggles.

Later still, Joey calls to invite Rodney to BJ's, a gay club. Rodney is excited by the invitation. To the tune of 'I'm so sexy' he gets ready for the big night. Joey honks from the street and Rodney crawls out his bedroom window to meet him.

Meanwhile, Sabrina and Rudy are hooking up in the front seat of a Volkswagen.

At the gay bar, Rodney and Joey have barely settled themselves on their stools when Joey is propositioned by a hot guy. Joey and the guy retire to the bathroom and Rodney sits rejected and alone. But then the show starts and a drag performer is introduced - Miss Autumn Leaves. In Judy/Liza fashion she performs a stirring rendition of "Give My Regards to Broadway." Rodney is awestruck, but not so much by the performance. It's that he recognizes the performer as none other than Mr. Cox. After the performance, Rodney steals backstage and confronts his teacher in the dressing room. No words are exchanged. They just stare at each other until Rodney departs.

Back in the Volkswagen, while in the heat of passion, Sabrina gets her behind stuck between the dashboard and the seat. Luckily, Rodney happens along and comes to the (broadly comic) rescue, thanks to a handful of butter.

When Rodney is back in his room, Joey comes to his window and apologizes for abandoning him at the bar. Rodney accepts the apology and they end the evening with a kiss.

Mr. Cox calls Rodney to say he's sorry for the scene earlier, but Rodney tells him he has nothing to apologize for, that Mr. Cox was amazing. Rodney's mother is listening in on the conversation.

The next day, outside, Sabrina regales Rodney with surprising (and not so welcome) details of her relationship with Rudy.

Rodney suffers further humiliation when he's chosen last for basketball in gym class, but leaves the class pleading illness.

Rodney meets up with Mr. Cox on the school stage, where once again they discuss their accidental meeting at the club. Rodney reassures Mr. Cox that he was amazing and not to be upset about it. Then, much to Mr. Cox's amusement, Rodney comes out to him, only to be told that it's not such a secret.

Sabrina and Rodney have dinner with her two Moms and they discuss Sabrina's problems at school and a plot for revenge.

Rodney returns home and tells his mother that he has had dinner at Sabrina's. She tells him that she wishes he wouldn't have dinner with lesbians. She has some other choice comments until Rodney mentions that Sabrina has accompanied him home and is standing right next to him, though out-of-sight in the hallway.

Sabrina and Rodney go back to Rodney's room, after being warned by Rodney's mother not to partake of any "horizontal folk dancing." The two listen to music, get drunk and laugh, until they both roll off the bed.

Rudy is having a family reunion, to which Rodney and Sabrina have been invited. When the two friends arrive they notice that all Rudy's family are African-American -- he's adopted. After initial concerns that they will once again be outsiders, Rodney and Sabrina are greeted warmly.

Rodney goes out with Joey to a roller rink. While in the bathroom after a slightly disappointing but humorous encounter, Joey tells Rodney he is a Satanist.

Back home, Rodney's mom and her Bereavement Buddies are planning to pop in the latest Kirk Cameron movie. But what they get instead is one of Rodney's porn tapes. Rodney's mom has a tough time explaining that the tape does not belong to her.

When Rodney returns, he denies any knowledge of the tape and swears that he is not gay.

The next day at church, Ted signals to Rodney to meet him, but on his way out of the pew, the minister mistakes Rodney's movement as an approach to the altar to accept Jesus. The congregation lays their hands on him. Later, when he does catch up with Ted, upstairs in the church, they begin to have sex in a closet only to have the door swing open onto a shocked Sunday school class.

Back in his room that night he gets high with Bobby, who doesn't understand why Rodney hangs out with Sabrina, though Rodney explains that he's her friend.

Before the graduation dance, Rodney and Sabrina get ready at Sabrina's house, excited about their dates and how the night will end. Rudy comes to pick up Sabrina and there are some humorously awkward moments with her moms.

They all arrive at the dance. Rodney and Joey dance. Then Rodney and Sabrina. The two couples are having a good time. But Bobby is drunk in a corner making out with Tina and Tina wants to dance. He won't. She asks Rudy, and with Sabrina's permission, they begin to move on the floor. A drunken Bobby calls Sabrina a fat bitch. When Rodney protests, Bobby calls him a fag. This stops everything. Rodney realizes the ignorance of the small town he lives in and perhaps his own naiveté in even going to the dance. We travel backwards at warp speed to the beginning of Rodney's journey.

Next, Rodney is telling us what he did next was the only thing a FAT GIRL could do. He's back in the bed, staring up at the ceiling, but now his bedmate moves and we can see him clearly. It is Mr. Cox, the nice guy teacher and drag performer. Rodney leaves the bed, moves to the bathroom and looks in the mirror. He tells us that he has discovered his inner FAT GIRL. It simply means he is finally comfortable and happy with himself.

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