Synopsis by Mark Deming
Most 15-year-old boys are obsessed with the opposite sex, but this may be the only area in which Oscar Grubman (Aaron Stanford) could be called typical. An honor student at an exclusive prep school, Oscar is confident, keenly intelligent, speaks fluent French, and is well versed in the work of a number of French authors, particularly his favorite, Voltaire. Oscar seems to have gotten his fascination with French culture from his mother, who several years ago divorced his father Stanley (John Ritter), a college professor, and moved to Paris. Stanley has recently remarried, taking an attractive woman in her mid-forties, Eve (Sigourney Weaver), as his new wife. Oscar, however, senses that Eve isn't happy in their marriage; certain he can give Eve the affection (both physical and emotional) that she needs, Oscar begins waging a low-key but ardent campaign to seduce his step-mother over the course of Thanksgiving weekend, despite the fact a number of Oscar's female classmates have made no secret of their attraction to him. Oscar's efforts to bed Eve attract the attention of one of her close friends, Diane (Bebe Neuwirth), a smart and sexy chiropractor who also becomes the not-entirely-unwelcome focus of Oscar's romantic attentions. Shot using digital video equipment, Tadpole was enthusiastically received at the 2002 Sundance Film Festival, where the film's director, Gary Winick, received the Director's Award.
seduction, stepmother, honor-student, poetry, prep-school, professor