Tiptoes (2003)

Film and Plot Synopsis

In Tiptoes, Carol is an artist, and Steven trains firefighters. The two lovebirds have lived together for months and plan to marry soon. However, there’s one small tidbit Steve’s never revealed to her; his parents, twin brother, and many of his relatives are dwarfs. Carol only learns this when Steve’s brother, Rolfe, drops by the day after she discovers she’s pregnant. Curious as to why Steve hasn’t told her about his family, she pays them a visit. Tensions soon mount between the two as Carol believes he’s secretly angry about his family, and he thinks she doesn’t fully understand the many problems little people encounter on a daily basis. Will the two’s relationship be able to get past this one tiny issue, or is it bigger than they can handle?

‘Tiptoes’ Movie Summary

The summary below contains spoilers.
Tiptoes begins when Rolfe Bedalia (Gary Oldman) and a Frenchman named Maurice (Peter Dinklage) are two dwarfs driving a pair of three-wheeled motorcycles 400 miles to a little convention in Los Angeles, California. Along the way, Maurice pulls over to snatch up Lucy (Patricia Arquette) (not a dwarf), a hitchhiker who’s just been kicked off a bus out in the middle of nowhere.

We switch locations to Los Angeles where we meet Rolfe’s twin brother and firefighter trainer, Steven (Matthew McConaughey) (not a dwarf), and his artist girlfriend Carol (Kate Beckinsale) (not a dwarf) at their loft/warehouse they live in. Steven heads out to attend the convention too, but he doesn’t tell Carol where he’s going.

When Steven arrives to the Little People Defense League convention, we learn that he and Rolfe’s parents are also little people; the condition runs in the family. Rolfe arrives late, and Steven lets him know their parents are a bit upset he took so long to show. So, Rolfe doesn’t go in to the convention. He leaves with Maurice and Lucy who quickly get kicked out for stealing food.

Later that night, as Steven and Carol get ready to go to bed, Carol tells him she’s pregnant. Steven freaks out a bit because he’s afraid any kid he has will also be a dwarf. He hops out of bed, and leaves.

Meanwhile, Rolfe, Maurice, and Lucy pull up to the Saharan Motor Hotel in Hollywood; a local shit hole that has a sign at the front desk banning prostitutes from its rooms. Unfortunately for Rolfe, there’s only one room left, and it only has two twin beds in it. She’s stuck with the lovebirds for the evening. Rolfe tries to sleep while Maurice has some horizontal refreshments with Lucy in the bed next to him.

However, Maurice’s stomach ulcers cock block him, and he doubles over from cramps. Rolfe tries to call him a doctor, but he refuses one, so Rolfe storms off. He drives off to hook up with Sally (Bridget Powers) (a dwarf), his on-again, off-again girlfriend since high school. As the two chit chat over old times, Sally’s current guy on the side, Adrissi (not a dwarf) barges in and demands money from her.

When Adrissi (Peter Macdissi) discovers Rolfe in her room, he gets a tad belligerent. Adrissi slaps Rolfe, and then begins beating on him until Sally hits Adrissi with a stereo; knocking him unconscious. Rolfe stumbles away before Sally can call the cops on Adrissi.

Rolfe heads over to Steven’s place to stay, but Steven is out for the week training a new group of firefighters. Carol’s there alone, and upset about her pregnancy test. She’s surprised to meet and learn about Rolfe as Steven never once mentioned he had a brother…or that his twin is a little person. She also learns that his parents are little people too.

Back at the no-tell motel, Maurice wakes up while Lucy sits on the floor and watches cartoons on TV. The motel manager (not a dwarf) tries to kick them out, but Lucy pops out of the room, and beats him. Maurice watches inside holding a gun in his hand. The two split before the cops arrest them.

Carol shows up to Steven’s training site to let him know Rolfe is staying at their place, and she’s a bit upset at him. She can’t believe that he never told her that his entire family is a bunch of midgets. They argue about whether their child will be a little person too, and Steven is afraid to confront this possibility.

Maurice and Lucy wind up at a park, and spreads out a blanket to make out on while children play around them. Lucy tells him about her crazy life in Phoenix, and then they make out some more. Carol returns home where she and Rolfe talk about her pregnancy. He takes her to meet his uncle’s family who all are of course little people too. His uncle runs the Little People Defense League. He and his wife give Carol some advice on what to expect if her baby is little, and then invite her and Steven to Jerry Robin Jr’s (David Alan Grier) (not a dwarf) house the next night.

Rolfe, Carol, Maurice, and Lucy arrive to the little people party, and mingle. Steven shows up a bit later with two cadets: a very sexy Darlene (Dana Sessen) and Bernadette (not dwarves). Sally’s there and she meets up with Rolfe while Maurice and Lucy start a fight with Rolfe’s uncle over his Little People organization. Rolfe drags Maurice away before it escalates any further. Rolfe then confronts Steven over his not telling Carol about his family, gets mad, and then rushes off to find Sally. He finally finds Jerry Robin Jr’s on top of her busy trying to push her stool in at the table. Rolfe storms out of that room too.

Back at home, Steven and Carol talk again about her keeping the baby. They agree to go through with having the baby, but Steven isn’t happy with the decision. The next day, Steve, Carol, and their two families meet for the first time. Carol’s mom, Sylvia (Susan Barnes) (not a dwarf), is freaked out while her dad, Kirk (Chad Everett) (not a dwarf), plays it a bit cooler. He hits it off with Steven as the two bond over being Navy veterans. After a few drinks, Kirk begins telling tall tales to the table.

While Steven’s parents are nice as can be, Sylvia is upset about something. When, Steven’s mom asks her what the issue is, we are led to believe she has a problem with their stature in the community. Surprisingly, all she’s nervous about is that she wants the wedding to be a Jewish service so an older family member will attend. She just does not know the diplomatic way to ask it, so she has Kirk make the request. Carol is relieved that her parents are supporting her decision to marry Steven, and everyone is all smiles. We next cut to the wedding which goes off without a hitch.

A few months pass, and the baby arrives. It’s a dwarf. Steven’s so upset, he punches a door. The doctor recommends he get some counseling, but Steven decided to abandon his new family instead. Carol leave Los Angeles to stay with Rolfe at his parent’s cabin.

Maurice and Lucy are there too, but they get in a little tiff, and it’s splitsville for them. With Maurice and Lucy gone, Rolfe helps Carol take care of the nameless baby…it could be Vincent…but the writer isn’t clear about it.

Eventually, Steven manages to pass by to say hi, and let Carol know he can help take care of the child. Carol balks because she says he doesn’t have a lot to offer the child so the two part ways possibly forever. Carol stays with Rolfe where, the two fall in love, and live happily ever after.

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Reality Check Productions Inc released Tiptoes on September 8, 2003. Matthew Bright directed the film starring Gary Oldman, Peter Dinklage, Kate Beckinsale.

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