Professor Daniel Waite is in a funk. He has a brilliant wife, tenure at the fabled University, and is well liked by colleagues and popular with students, who flock to his film studies courses. And he hates his life. He can’t bring himself to write, disdains academia, barely gets through his class lectures, and spends a lot of time hiding in his office in a stupor, pondering his collection of movie posters.
All that changes when his new teaching assistant shows up at his door. At first, he’s thrown by the eccentric and intense Stacy Mann, but he soon finds in her a kindred spirit of sorts: an outsider, a cynic who shares his antipathy for the University, someone receptive to his alienation and resentment. And, most importantly, her knowledge of movie trivia rivals his own. But he soon suspects she is not who she appears to be, that there may be a hidden agenda, one that threatens his very standing. What begins as a tantalizing connection soon spirals into a three-day frenzy of murder, evasion, and deceit—all against the backdrop of the University, an absurdist place where privilege, hierarchies, and campus politics reign.