I Love You, Man



Male bonding comedy is very crude -- but good-hearted.
  • Review Date: August 10, 2009
  • Rated: R
  • Genre: Comedy
  • Release Year: 2009
  • Running Time: 110 minutes

What parents need to know

Positive messages

Though the main characters behave in notably immature ways and there are plenty of suggestive/crude jokes, the movie also has positive messages about friendship, communication, and respect. A positively portrayed gay character uses language like "Dad's down with the gays" and "Dad's with the homos."

Positive role models

Characters are not meant to be role models. Although the characters grow up a bit and learn some lessons, there's no one you would want your kid to emulate.


Some scuffling for comedic purposes; a "sleeper hold" is applied. Comedic golfing injuries.


Extensive, crude, blunt discussion of sex, sexual practices (including oral sex, masturbation, and pornography), techniques, and more. A character talks about watching a video of a grandmother using a sexual aide; viewers don't see the footage but do hear about it at great length, in graphic language. In between the vulgar jokes, there's also some rational discussion of how couples communicate about sex, as well as some discussion of homosexuality and bisexuality.


Extensive/frequent swearing and strong language, including "f--k," "f---ed," "goddamn," "dicks," "whore," "slut," "hell," "suck it," "b--w jobs," "suck," "balls," "crap," "oh my God," "buttocks," and many more.


Plenty of obvious product placement, including iPhones, Heineken beer, and Equinox Gyms. Other featured brands include HBO, Century 21 realty, Time magazine, Bennigans, Legoland, AMC, Pepperidge Farm, the L.A. Galaxy soccer team, and more. Also lots of mentions of TV shows and movies like Saturday Night Live, Chocolat, The Devil Wears Prada, Mr. Magorium's Wonder Emporium, Runaway Bride, Lost, The Incredible Hulk, and more. The band Rush is featured prominently.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking

Characters drink champagne, wine, beer, and hard liquor to excess and smoke cigargettes. Beer is drunk as part of a competitive game, with dire consequences. Marijuana smoking paraphernalia is seen.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this hard-R "bromantic" comedy starring Judd Apatow regulars Paul Rudd and Jason Segel, is loaded with strong language ("f--k" is just the beginning), graphic discussions about sex, heavy drinking, and generally shameless bathroom humor. At the same time, it does portray relationships between men and between couples in a more realistic light than many other movies -- focusing on the need for respect and communication -- and ultimately has its heart in the right place.

What's the story?

In I LOVE YOU, MAN, Peter (Paul Rudd) has proposed to his girlfriend, Zooey (Rashida Jones); wedding preparations are underway when Peter realizes that he doesn't have a male best friend to ask to be his best man. So he embarks on a quest to make male friends, but his efforts are as ineffectual as they are strained. Then Peter meets relaxed free-spirit Sydney (Jason Segel), and it seems like he could be "the one." But Peter is going to find out that having a best friend isn't always easy.

Is it any good?


Like similarly-toned comedies The 40-Year-Old Virgin and Superbad, I Love You, Man, walks a fine line in depicting outlandish, vulgar behavior on the road to wisdom. While I Love You, Man may not walk that line as smoothly as those earlier films, it also has a grace of its own, specifically thanks to Rudd's underplayed scene-stealing performance as a man more than a little uncomfortable in his own life.

Segel is also fine as a slightly solipsistic slacker -- Sydney lives the way he wants to, which can make him both an inspiration and an irritation -- and the rest of the supporting cast, most notably Jon Favreau and Jaime Pressly's feuding, loving couple -- are excellent as well. Director John Hamburg also has the good judgment to simply let his cast rip in some of the funnier, zingier moments of dialogue. I Love You Man looks sour and slick, but it's surprisingly earnest and heartfelt once you get past its more outlandish excesses.

Families can talk about...

  • Familes can talk about whether the movie's message comes across amid the crude humor. Does the film's reliance on strong language and sex jokes undermine its themes and positive messages, or does it make those messages more likely to be seen by a broad audience?

  • Discuss the real question of male friendship. Do men, in general, lack the emotional vocabulary to form new friendships after a certain age? And what emotional needs does male friendship meet?

Movie details

Theatrical release date:March 20, 2009
DVD release date:August 11, 2009
Cast:Jason Segel, Paul Rudd, Rashida Jones
Director:John Hamburg
Studio:Paramount Pictures
Run time:110 minutes
MPAA rating:R
MPAA explanation:pervasive language, including crude and sexual references

This review of I Love You, Man was written by

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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What parents and kids say

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Parent of a 11 and 13 year old Written byParent and Son ... April 6, 2009

Great movie but one for the mature ones

Since my child id very mature for his age, This wasnt a problem for y kid but other parents might be concerned about innapropriate language
What other families should know
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Adult Written bywallaceson August 28, 2009
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much consumerism
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Adult Written byFancyChristine15 October 7, 2010

Very funny movie for older teens and adults

This movie is hilarious! There is quite a bit of cursing and talking about sex but it is really funny. I would recommend it for older teens and adults.
What other families should know
Too much sex
Too much swearing


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