How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days
By Common Sense Media,
Common Sense Media Reviewer
Common Sense Media Reviewers
Battle-of-the-sexes romcom has language, sexual references.
A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
Don't play games with others' emotions. You can't choose who you fall in love with. Lies and deceit catch up with you.
Positive Role Models
Andie is a journalist for a women's magazine who wants to cover more important issues. Ben is an arrogant high-flyer in an ad agency, yet shows a caring, down-to-earth side with his family. Both put their careers before others' feelings. They trick each other into a relationship and behave in deceitful ways to manipulate the outcome for their own needs. They do, however, start to care for each other, and show some remorse for their behavior.
Majority White cast. Gender roles are reinforced and sexism is expressed by main characters. A stereotypically "emotional" woman is shown crying in bed after the end of a week-long relationship and worries it's because she's fat. Ben has a "boys' night" drinking beer and playing poker. Andie decorates Ben's home with pink, implying that that the color is threatening to manliness. Ben makes sexist references to female colleagues, calling them "hot leggy chick" and "lips and hips." Broad sexist comments are made, like "No man understands women," and "A woman loves a man who can cook." A group laughs at a woman with a larger body type, implying that Ben wouldn't date her. Passing jokes about homosexuality and Tourette's.
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Violence & Scariness
A character is punched in the face. Dangerous driving on a motorbike.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Plenty of sexual references and innuendo. A man is shown shirtless in an office, with women looking at him through a window. Flirting, kissing, kissing on a bed, and a couple undresses and kisses in the shower -- only their backs and shoulders are shown. A woman seductively strokes her cleavage, and a character rubs their head on a woman's clothed breasts for comfort. Jokes about maintaining sexual arousal, and a woman refers to her partner's penis a number of times, naming it Princess Sophia. Orgasms and other sexual references in women's magazine. Characters visit couples/sex therapist.
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Many instances of "s--t," plus "piss," "ass," "freaking," "butt," "screw," "bitch," "Jesus, Mary, and Joseph," and "holy crap." Characters play the card game known as "Bulls--t."
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Products & Purchases
Poppa Corn, Nerf, Budweiser, and Coke mentioned and shown onscreen, the latter two a number of times.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Characters drink -- beer, wine, cocktails, and champagne -- and are seen drunk. Smoking (cigarettes and cigars). Passing mention of crack, and a character asks: "Is she on something?"
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days is a romcom starring Kate Hudson and Matthew McConaughey. It leans heavily into gender stereotypes and includes innuendo, sexual references, and mature content. There's mention of impotence, orgasms, sexual acts, and naming private parts, as well as jokes about homosexuality, body size, and Tourette's. Characters drink and smoke on many occasions, with drinking portrayed as a way to handle unhappiness. Strong language includes "s--t," "ass," and "bitch," and there's continuous swearing during a card game called "Bulls--t." Characters lie to and manipulate others for their own gain, though they feel some remorse when they develop real feelings. Teens and adults may enjoy the familiar, formulaic approach with easy laughs and A-list actors, but those looking for a smarter comedy will be left disappointed.
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How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days
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How to lose a guy in 10 days
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What's the Story?
In HOW TO LOSE A GUY IN 10 DAYS, journalist Andie (Kate Hudson) meets ad salesman Ben (Matthew McConaughey), and the two embark on a romantic relationship. But behind the scenes, Andie is on an assignment for a women's magazine -- and she must do everything in her power to make Ben dump her in 10 days. Ben, on the other hand, has made a bet that he can make any woman fall in love with him in the same amount of time in order to win a high-flying account. Will either of them emerge victorious?
Is It Any Good?
Hudson and McConaughey go for a Doris Day/Rock Hudson-style battle of the sexes in this romantic comedy, but their deceptive behavior irritates more than charms most of the time. But How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days does have some clever jabs, and there are likable moments for the characters, too.
A lot of the things Andie does feel like binary, stereotypical examples of "female behavior." But we also see how well-suited Andie and Ben are for each other when they're being themselves, which helps viewers root for the couple on some level. The film is far from groundbreaking and feels behind the times, even for its 2003 release, but solid performances and familiar territory make it an easy watch.
Talk to Your Kids About ...
Families can talk about how gender is portrayed in How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days. What stereotypes does it use? What do you think is the effect of portraying such stereotypes on-screen?
Andie and Ben begin their relationship in a lie and gradually grow to care for each other. Why do you think truth is important in a relationship? Why is honesty a positive character trait?
What romcom cliches do you notice in the film? Can you spot any similarities with other films in this genre?
- In theaters: February 7, 2003
- On DVD or streaming: July 1, 2003
- Cast: Adam Goldberg, Kate Hudson, Matthew McConaughey
- Director: Donald Petrie
- Studio: Paramount Pictures
- Genre: Comedy
- Run time: 115 minutes
- MPAA rating: PG-13
- MPAA explanation: some sex-related material
- Last updated: March 8, 2023
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