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40 Days and 40 Nights is a 2002 romantic comedy film directed by Michael Lehmann, written by Rob Perez, and starring Josh Hartnett, Shannyn Sossamon, Paulo Costanzo, and Vinessa Shaw.

Matt Sullivan (Hartnett), after a bad breakup and finding out his ex-girlfriend Nicole (Shaw) is now engaged to another man, decides to give something up for Lent: namely, any form of sex, including keeping himself company. When his friends find out, they make a Side Bet that he won't make it, which eventually goes viral with people online betting as to what day and manner in which he'll break the vow. Things go a bit awry when he meets Erica (Sossamon), the girl of his dreams, soon after.


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This film contains examples of:

  • Almighty Janitor: The bagel guy (played by Michael Maronna) seems to know everything. Incidentally, he's how Matt found out about Nicole's engagement.

  • The Bet: What day and act Matt will break his vow of celibacy to.

  • Betty and Veronica: Erica (brunette but nice) and Nicole (blonde but not so nice).

  • The Immodest Orgasm:
    • Early in the film, Matt fakes an orgasm with his date. She isn't convinced.
    • Matt also overhears Ryan and a girl having sex.

  • It's Not You, It's Me: Matt tells Erica something like this when trying to explain his vow of celibacy.

  • Jerkass: Pretty much most of the supporting cast. Matt's priest brother John doesn't support or help him stay celibate. Some of Matt's co-workers try to get Matt to break his vow through a number of ways. And Nicole sexually assaults him.

  • Karma Houdini: Nicole, as mentioned, sexually assaults Matt and gets the pooled money, and just skankily saunters off into the night.

  • The Loins Sleep Tonight: What kick-starts the plot, since Matt has Nicole (or, more accurately, her recent engagement) stuck in his head.

  • Loophole Abuse : Erica and Matt agree "it doesn't count."

  • The Modest Orgasm: Erica has one after Matt blows a flower across her body.

  • The Mole: Ryan reports on Matt's activities during Lent.


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