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Birthday


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Comedy/, 2014, 22 min.

Synopsis At the bar, Cece brings Jess a birthday drink, that, judging by the fact Jess can't breathe after she takes a sip, might be a wee bit strong.For her birthday, instead of her usual going to the movies by herself, Jess is spending the day with Nick. She admits she has a lot of birthday expectations.Flash to Jess opening a present from Cece. It's a shirt, but she just sees the label says "Made in China" and thinks it means Cece is taking her to China. That's where the alone at the movies came from. She says she's just safer that way.Cece goes over to the guys at the end of the bar and reports she has no idea about the party. They cheer, drawing Jess' attention. To cover, Nick announces that Winston is STD-free.Keeping the secret has been nearly impossible for Nick, a notorious non-secret keeper. Coach was on decorations and Winston is on "cake patrol." Schmidt is transporting "all electronics" to the venue, and by that means a flash drive. Cece is going to cover Nick's Saturday night shift. Nick's boss Mike is not thrilled. He doesn't think she's ready, she set fire to soda water.The party planning has taken nearly everything out of Nick, but they ask him what he has planned for the day -- the party isn't til 7p.He thinks he won't have to start until noon because Jess will want to sleep in. Cut to the next morning, Jess wide awake at 7 a.m., the time she was born.In the kitchen, there's been a slight mix up with the cake, which has a giant handgun on it and says "See you in hell, Boomer." Nick assigns Coach and Winston to fixing it then sets about making a 90 minute omelet to kill time. Schmidt volunteers to check up on Cece at the bar.Jess helps and it takes 6 minutes. Nick suggests they go into the bedroom to "slow things down," cut to them in bed and Jess saying it's the fastest it's ever been. He suggests a six or seven hour nap, but she wants to go outside. He says lunch is next. It's 8:30a.m.At the bar, Cece is drying glasses when she knocks one into the ice and breaks it. Mike is annoyed and tells her he's not going to cover for her like Nick does, and she can't flirt with him because he's "super gay." He assess her as 3 out of 6.In the loft, Coach brags about nailing the decorations. He even has kazoos. Nick calls to check in. He took Jess to get a free diabetes test at a drug store.Back at the loft, Winston thinks Coach is trying to show him up. Winston complains that's what Coach has always done and challenges him to a bake-off. "I'm going to make a cake so moist girls are gonna be like, 'Why do you say moist? I hate that word. And I'll be like, Just taste the cake. And they'll be like, Damn, it's moist," Coach says.At the bar, Mike brings Cece back a customer's Old Fashioned -- gin in a mug with a peanut. He tells her to make another one or he's calling the manager, which he wants to do anyway because he's gorgeous. "I want to be a barnacle on his ship, just hanging on by my mouth, getting all the nutrients I need," Mike says.Cece has no idea what's in it, so Schmidt pretends to talk to himself and walks her through it.Nick takes Jess to the park and challenges her to find the biggest rock she can. She tells him it's OK if he didn't plan anything, but he tells her he did and he's about to blow her mind. Jess walks around a tree and sees a table set up with presents and a Happy Birthday sign and cupcakes. She jumps for joy and goes to sit down while Nick tries to get her to stop. Jess bites into the cupcake as a couple dozen kids come down the hill. "That lady stole my birthday!" the girl shouts.Jess runs off and Nick tries to talk to her. She's in tears as she assures him she's fine and appreciates that he planned a fun day for her, which is impressive because she says he's not a guy who plans things. She tells him she's just going to go home for a minute and he shouldn't follow her. She runs off.At the bar, Cece and Schmidt struggle to tap a keg. Cece ends up spraying Mike in the face, leading him to call her a "butthole" and tell her she can't do anything right. She wonders why she thought she could bartend. "Because you can. You are strong and you are confident. Those are skills, use them. And be a little bit meaner to the people here. It should be easy for you, just pretend they're me," Schmidt says.At the loft, Coach is lapping Winston in cake baking. Winston is wearing paper towels taped together as an apron. They struggle to hide their cakes as she comes in and flops on the couch crying. The clean up the kitchen and hide all the decorations. Winston runs off with the "surprise" balloons as Coach gets her to close her eyes and think of a happy place.Winston calls Nick from the bedroom. Nick is doubting himself but Winston tells him he has a whole team of friends pulling for him.At the bar, Cece reports in to Mike after cleaning everything up. She tells him she and her "friend" are going to a party. Schmidt appreciates being called her friend again.At the loft, Winston and Coach wait to see the results of their baked cakes. They're both perfect and merged together. Coach and Winston share a close moment over the intimacy of their cakes. Nick goes to get Jess and finds a note saying she's at the movies. "This might actually work," Nick says.In the theater, after the cell phone warning, a video of Nick comes on the screen, saying hello to her. He tells her to look under her seat, then real Nick joins her (he put a note under every seat). She reads: "My name is Jess, I like to wear tights, it's dark in this room, so let's turn on the lights."Everybody in the theater jumps up and shouts surprise, with party hats and Coach's kazoos. Schmidt, Cece, Winston and Coach are there, too.A birthday video plays on the screen. It's all her friends talking about the things they think of when they think of Jess. Principal Foster says: "Your youthful exuberance exhausts me, may it fade with each passing year."Outside Dave describes her as "the upstair lady."Rose is identified as "Colleague/Loose Cannon." She wishes happy birthday to her "best work friend." "Tina, if you see this, I'm sorry. I just feel like we drifted apart after Jeremy's cocaine thing," she says.Bearclaw (Josh Gad) sent a message unsolicited about a squirrel he saw that looks like Jess.Tran, Nick's silent Asian counselor is there, silent.Jess' class waves and wishes her happy birthday with the caption: "Your Class, Weirdly OK with strange man taping them."Jess' mom (Jamie Lee Curtis) tells her she just remember the searing pain. Her dad (Rob Reiner) says: "When you were born I got a deli sandwich at the cafeteria. And then there was a baby."Nick is last, showing her the coin he had in his pocket the first night they kissed. Now he always has it. Winston and Coach come in singing with their merged cake, but everyone looks around and sees that Jess is gone.Nick finds her crying in the hall. He starts apologizing that it was weird and he "didn't have great talent to work with", Winston was terrible.She kisses him and says it's the nicest thing anyone's ever done for her.Back in the theatre, Schmidt's part plays. He tells her happy birthday then arms a car alarm and the car explodes. Everyone throws popcorn at him. Then he runs away from a herd of dinosaurs.

Directed by Richie Keen  

Starring Zooey Deschanel, Jake M. Johnson, Max Greenfield, Lamorne Morris, Hannah Simone, more...

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