27 Dresses

Movie review by
S. Jhoanna Robledo, Common Sense Media
27 Dresses Movie Poster Image
Popular with kids
Frothy wedding romcom is fun but filled with profanity.
  • PG-13
  • 2008
  • 107 minutes

Parents say

age 12+
Based on 15 reviews

Kids say

age 12+
Based on 64 reviews

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this movie.

Positive Messages

Nothing too bad for the romcom genre, though there are the requisite plot-driving shenanigans: A woman pretends to be someone she's not to land a fiancé ... who happens to be the man her sister loves; a reporter deceives a woman, making her think he's writing about something else when she's actually the subject of his exposé; a woman humiliates her sister at her engagement party. The overall message (that women aren't happy unless they're the bride, instead of the bridesmaid) feels a bit dated.

Violence

A woman slaps a man (hard) after he wrongs her; two sisters argue loudly, with one throwing objects at the other.

Sex

Deep kissing and making out (on a couch and in a car); sexual innuendoes (e.g. "walk of shame" and hooking up at weddings); a woman stands in her lingerie during a dress fitting.

Language

A fairly generous sprinkling of the word "s--t," plus "whore" and "a--hole."

Consumerism

Visible/referenced brands include Budweiser (a bottle appears fairly prominently in one scene) and Filofax; the dressing room of Amsale, a wedding dress designer, is shown in one scene.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Lots of drinking at wedding receptions; in a major scene, the two leads get plastered after drinking lots of hard liquor and beer.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that although this film is fairly charming and no more objectionable, content-wise, than most other Hollywood romantic comedies (that is, if you don't object to movies that fully embrace romcom clichés), there is a fairly liberal sprinkling of swear words (particularly "s--t") and drinking. The message -- that women aren't truly happy if they're always the bridesmaid but never the bride -- verges on being a little overly retro, but since the movie is so frothy, it manages to get away with that such old-fashioned thinking. Star Katherine Heigl was in the hit comedy Knocked Up, so teens (particularly girls) will likely be interested.

Wondering if 27 Dresses is OK for your kids?

Set preferences and get age-appropriate recommendations with Common Sense Media Plus. Join now

Continue reading Show less

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written bygoodgirl January 10, 2017

i don't have a problem with it.

I liked it. good movie for teens 12 and up . not bad.
Adult Written bywonder dove July 3, 2013

Not bad...

The movie isn't great, but it's not bad either. Definitely watchable if you like chick flicks with happy endings. It's basically about a young wo... Continue reading
Teen, 17 years old Written byMaddison Ross May 13, 2020

Feel-Good

As far as I know, these are the only content to look out for: One bar/drinking scene, a few kissing, lots of swearing, and a drunken sex scene.

This is one of... Continue reading
Kid, 12 years old May 14, 2011

The perfect chick-flick!

This is a movie worth watching 27 times! Awesome movie for girls and sleepover proof! Though a little parent guidance is needed.

What's the story?

Jane Nichols (Katherine Heigl) is a people pleaser to the core; she'll happily twist herself into a pretzel juggling two weddings in one night and playing second banana to Bridezillas -- which is how she's ended up in more than 20 wedding parties. Enter Kevin "Malcolm" Doyle (James Marsden) -- the journalist who writes Jane's favorite wedding column -- who helps her see how debilitating her selflessness has become. They hate each other at first, but then (no surprise) wind up together. Meanwhile, Jane's millionaire boss (Ed Burns) doesn't realize that she's madly infatuated with him. Instead, he falls for her vampy but vacuous sister, Tess (Malin Akerman).

Is it any good?

How anyone could swap Jane for Tess is a serious mystery -- just one of a number of 27 DRESSES' irritating, albeit small, flaws. On the other hand, there are some rewards -- like Judy Greer, who plays Casey, Jane's saucy, witty best friend. The movie also benefits from director Anne Fletcher's light-and-easy style (thankfully, she doesn't take the subject matter seriously) and, more importantly, the Heigl's effervescence. She and Marsden have great chemistry, making their predictable arc fairly entertaining.

The verdict: Brilliant 27 Dresses isn't, and there's something dated about the idea that a woman isn't happy when she's playing bridesmaid instead of bride. Considering that the movie was written by Aline Brosh McKenna, who also penned the bitingly exquisite The Devil Wears Prada, a bit more inventiveness shouldn't have been out of the question. But anyone who's donned a bridesmaid dress and has a romantic streak will enjoy this conventional confection -- consider it a no-guilt slice of wedding cake.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the film's message. What's wrong with being a bridesmaid? Is a woman truly not happy if she's never the bride? How does Hollywood contribute to this thinking? Families can also discuss weddings: Have they become, as one character says in the movie, an industry that capitalizes on romantic ideals? What truly makes a wedding special, if it's not the presents, the fancy dresses, and the over-the-top receptions?

Movie details

Our editors recommend

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

See how we rate

Streaming options powered by JustWatch

About these links

Common Sense Media, a nonprofit organization, earns a small affiliate fee from Amazon or iTunes when you use our links to make a purchase. Thank you for your support.

Read more

Our ratings are based on child development best practices. We display the minimum age for which content is developmentally appropriate. The star rating reflects overall quality.

Learn how we rate