Kissing Jessica Stein Movie Poster Image

Kissing Jessica Stein



Sweet comedy about when a girl meets girl.
  • Rated: R
  • Genre: Comedy
  • Release Year: 2001
  • Running Time: 96 minutes

What parents need to know

Positive messages

While the film does include highly critical characters, it also depicts various individuals struggling with love, sexual identity, and commitment.

Not applicable

The film shows one of the main characters engaging in spontaneous and non-monogamous sex. It depicts semi-graphic scenes of both straight and lesbian sex.


Profanity is present (mostly euphemisms for sexual organs and acts), but kept to a minimum.

Not applicable
Drinking, drugs, & smoking

Inclusion of multiple instances of social drinking, but not drunkenness.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that that this film explores a young woman's sexual orientation as she tries out a lesbian relationship. The movie has intimate scenes depicting same sex relationships and some scenes of sexual activity.

Parents say

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What's the story?

Jessica is the highly neurotic and previously straight (and sexually repressed) half, of a lesbian couple struggling to find intimacy, love, and personal satisfaction. Living in present-day New York, Jessica (Jennifer Westfeldt) and Helen (Heather Juergensen) struggle with bad dating, old and current boyfriends, a crazy Jewish mother, and confusing feelings. Jessica does not know what she wants. Her mother just wants her to settle down with a nice Jewish man, while Helen wants to find the perfect combination of love and sexual heat. Ultimately, the couple must investigate their own feelings about love, sex, and friendship and go for broke in their searches for personal fulfillment.

Is it any good?


KISSING JESSICA STEIN is a witty and hysterical romp through sexual discovery. It transcends the label of "lesbian comedy" to succeed as a romantic comedy that illustrates the feelings and struggles common to all. Aside from strong performances by its lead women, the film also includes inspired performances by Jackie Hoffman as Jessica's wacky coworker/best friend and Tovah Feldshuh (Law and Order and Broadway) as her domineering mother. As an added bonus, the film also includes a hysterical and odd performance by JM J Bullock (Too Close for Comfort [1980] and The Jim J. and Tammy Faye Show [1996]) as one of Jessica's bad dates.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about different expressions of sexuality, and societal pressures. They may want to use the title character's relationship with her mother as a springboard for discussing their receptiveness to their childrens' own personal choices.

Movie details

Theatrical release date:April 21, 2001
DVD/Streaming release date:September 7, 2004
Cast:Heather Juergensen, Jennifer Westfeldt, Tovah Feldshuh
Director:Charles Herman-Wurmfeld
Studio:Twentieth Century Fox
Run time:96 minutes
MPAA rating:R
MPAA explanation:sexual content and language

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Teen, 15 years old Written byKass April 9, 2008

A great picture... for adults

Kissing Jessica Stein is the best kind of romantic comedy- one that is effortlessly enchanting and witty. This can in large part owed to its dazzling screenplay and the pitch-perfect performance of Jennifer Westfeldt, who makes the pretentious and neurotic Jessica a truly lovable character. Nevertheless, due to its content matter, this a film unsuitable for children.
Teen, 17 years old Written byStrawbs April 24, 2016
Really, just a disappointment. After reading some ratings I decided to watch this film for myself and found it to drag on. Jessica stein is a neurotic young woman in search of the perfect man but instead finds the perfect woman. This unfunny "rom com", or so it claims to be, had me cringing for it to end. I found it unappealing and unsatisfying - not the way one should feel after watching a romantic comedy. There were ZERO "aww" moments and the sex scenes were rather disgusting. Don't waste your time, really.
What other families should know
Too much sex


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