Paul is the gravitational pull on his college friends
who have somehow stayed in his orbit for nearly a decade,
meeting every summer for a weekend at his mother's house
in upstate New York. This year, Paul makes a desperate
attempt to keep everyone together. His friends don't cooperate.
And everything reminds them of how far they have, in fact,
ORIGIN OF THE SPECIES starts as a parable of human evolution
and develops as a lighthearted drama. Paul has prepared
menus and conversation topics circling the question of
how a species evolves. Sex is the catalyst, but sex is
only the beginning.
Paul's wife, Julia, is ambivalent about being pregnant
and has not yet told him about the pregnancy. When she
finally does, Paul seems completely out of touch with
her emotions, jeopardizing the future of their relationship.
Stan has recently survived testicular cancer, but he's
far from feeling alive. Kate, Stan's ex-girlfriend, abandoned
him during his illness. Now Kate discovers that her friend
Laura has designs on her former lover. Laura, ostensibly
the least successful and least sexy, offers the most compassion
and insight. Stan's doctor has told him that sex, in his
case, is medically uncertain. Kate tempts him with sex.
Laura teaches him about love.
Fisher, the consummate player, loses patience with his
friends, especially Paul. Fisher is surprised to find
that Julia sometimes shares his feelings. The two take
a morning outing to a country donut stand where their
flirtation becomes a betrayal.
When Paul reveals his biggest biological find, the story
of a recently discovered primate species, the Bonobos,
the annual skinny dipping ritual becomes a ritual in a
deeper sense. They learn the lesson of an evolutionary
ancestor: sex is only a step on the way to truly loving