An independent feature of the keep-it-in-focus-and-let-everyone-take-turns-talking school, Elia Zois' Jersey Guy stars the uninspiring Steve Parlavecchio as a guy who works at a nursing home, lives with his parents, and dates a childhood sweetheart (Stacie Mistysyn) whose gentle attempts to get him to pop the question get less gentle by the week. During a night out in New York that Zois treats with all the heightened tension of Frodo crossing into Mordor, Parlavecchio meets a leggy model (Jill Wolfe) who takes a liking to him, in part because, as she later explains, he's "not an asshole." But he is kind of an asshole, and that–along with the stilted dialogue, clueless portrayals of women, and the fact that much of the plot has been lifted from Tom Perrotta's terrific novel The Wishbones–ranks among the film's main problems. Caustic without being witty and willing to turn his back on his friends whenever it suits him, Parlavecchio doesn't make a sympathetic protagonist, which may explain why Wolfe doesn't appear comfortable sharing the frame with him, much less a post-coital embrace. When the film thrusts him into her world of drunken parties and free love, a world that seems not to have touched her at all, it's less a clash of cultures than a conflict between two different schools of jerkdom. Zois announces his themes in bold letters, which only makes them look more facile. "I represent something to you," Wolfe tells Parlavecchio at one point, as if Zois had let her see his script notes; that moment rivals the dream-sequence re-staging of A Place In The Sun's murder scene in an indoor pool as the film's worst. Before easily riled Kevin Smith fans get the wrong idea, Jersey Guy predates Smith's forthcoming Jersey Girl by several years. A debut feature completed in 2000, it's aged more like cottage cheese than like wine.