The Other Woman

Movie review by
S. Jhoanna Robledo, Common Sense Media
The Other Woman Movie Poster Image
Female buddy comedy OK for older teens; some sex, drinking.
  • PG-13
  • 2014
  • 109 minutes
Popular with kids

Parents say

age 14+
Based on 13 reviews

Kids say

age 14+
Based on 29 reviews

A lot or a little?

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

Positive messages

Three women thrown together by unusual circumstances -- they were all seeing the same man (and one's married to him) -- manage to direct their anger at the actual perpetrator, the philanderer, rather than at each other. Instead of competing for his attentions, they empower each other and form a deep, hilarious friendship. Lots of toilet humor (diarrhea, dog poop, vomit).

Positive role models & representations

Carly is a strong, self-possessed woman who won't let a man define her or set the romantic agenda. She helps Kate find her own voice in a lie-filled relationship. Kate, for her part, taps into a deep well of forgiveness for Carly and Amber, fixing her anger on the man who wronged them, not at the women (who were also deceived) and, more importantly, not at herself.

Violence

A woman wreaks havoc on a room with a golf club. A man walks into a glass window, breaking his nose (the scene turns bloody fast), then proceeds to run through and shatter a glass cubicle wall. He then gets punched in the face. A woman tackles another.

Sex

Lots of innuendo. Frank talk about waxing private parts and the frequency with which a couple has sex. Passionate kissing and groping. A man walks around in a towel. A bikini-clad woman's body is frequently shown in close-up (lingering on breasts and bottom), with characters discussing her appeal.

Language

Many uses of "s--t" (and the related "bulls--t"), plus "a--hole," "damn," "hell," and "pu--y."

Consumerism

Labels are flashed to denote characters' affluence, including Mercedes Benz. Also: iPhone, Dell, etc.

Drinking, drugs & smoking

Lots of social drinking by adults (wine, shots of hard liquor), sometimes to the point of inebriation. It seems like someone almost always has a drink in hand. One character says she wants to smoke but isn't shown doing so.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that this sometimes very funny buddy comedy was originally rated R, but the MPAA lowered the rating to PG-13 after an appeal. Still, there's no shortage of iffy-for-younger-viewers material, starting with the premise: Three women (played by Cameron DiazLeslie Mann, and Kate Upton) form an offbeat friendship when they all realize they've been seeing the same man (one is actually married to him). Despite a plot revolving around cheating/infidelity, the messages that come through the strongest are the ones related to the women's friendship (which based on mutual respect) and mission (righting a wrong). Expect lots of innuendo/frank talk about sex (though no nudity) and relationships, kissing, scantily clad women and men, a little blood (a character walks into a glass door), swearing (mostly "s--t" and "a--hole"), some toilet humor (poop, vomit), and frequent social drinking, sometimes to excess.

User Reviews

Parent of a 10 and 14 year old Written byorchidflame May 2, 2014

Kind of raunchy!

I felt that this particular movie was far too much for any kid under 17. Our family is very traditional, when it comes to matters of sex and relationships. I fe... Continue reading
Parent of a 14 and 15 year old Written bysoccermom72 June 1, 2014

I loved this movie

i loved this movie and my kids did too. My family is christian and we are very set in our values, but I felt that my values were stifling my kids ability to cho... Continue reading
Kid, 12 years old June 9, 2014

Our Generation

In our generation, you can't hide your kids from our society. So might as well let them see it, if they want to. As long as you think your child is mature... Continue reading
Teen, 14 years old Written byKaty22 April 27, 2014

What's the story?

New York City lawyer Carly (Cameron Diaz) has no time for friends. She barely has time for a boyfriend. But when she meets handsome, charming entrepreneur Mark (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau), she's smitten enough to cast away all other suitors. Eight weeks into their relationship, she decides to surprise Mark at his Connecticut house ... but the door is opened by Kate (Leslie Mann), Mark's wife. Carly and Kate realize they've been played and form a fast, if awkward, friendship. When they discover that Mark has yet another fling (Kate Upton), they spin into action.

Is it any good?

This movie is entertaining and sometimes insightful, even empowering, especially in the way it turns the idea of two (or, in this case, multiple) women vying for one man's attentions on its head. Here, the competition is immediately neutralized in the service of sisterhood, a refreshingly different take on the usual sexist tropes. Diaz is especially appealing for her ability to be acidic and embracing at the same time. Carly could have easily become the woman most wives would want to hate, but she's isn't. That's because Diaz plays her with knowing and compassion, and the friendship that develops between Kate and Carly is a bond based on true common ground.

But is The Other Woman good? Sure, in a baby-steps kind of way. But the "girl power" aspect is diluted by stereotypical bantering between the women that seems to only cover the same old tired subjects: body image, boy trouble, and grooming. Aren't women much more complicated than that? Especially those who hold high-level legal jobs and visionaries who ostensibly have sellable business ideas? It doesn't help that Upton's character is played as a ditz. Still, this buddy comedy is an improvement on many others that have preceded it. And that's worth applauding.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about The Other Woman's take on female friendships. How is it portrayed here compared to other stories about two women who like the same man? What messages does it offer about friendships between women?

  • Do you think the movie undermines or embraces stereotypes about women? Do the main characters' conversations and relationships seem realistic to you?

  • The movie was originally rated R before being downgraded to PG-13. Is that rating appropriate, or is it too mature for a PG-13? Why do you think the filmmakers pursued the lower rating?

Movie details

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