A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this movie.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that The Perfect Match is a romantic comedy that's largely about sex, so it will be an iffy choice for younger teens. The main character is the lone single man among a friend group of long-term couples, who all disapprove of his sexual exploits because they see his inability to make a long-term commitment as the root of his ultimate unhappiness. Expect to see lots of skin (though nothing more graphic than bare butts), especially when the main character has no-strings sex with a woman in a restaurant bathroom. Characters also talk openly about genitalia, a woman trying to get pregnant visits a sex shop to liven up her increasingly tedious sex life, close friends share sexual concerns, and both male and female characters are ogled. There's also a lot of strong language -- "f--k," "s--t," "t-ts," etc. -- and characters sometimes drink too much.
What's the story?
A tight group of five long-time Los Angeles friends gearing up to celebrate the wedding of Victor (Robert Christopher Riley) and Ginger (Lauren London). Meanwhile, Pressie (Dascha Polanco) and Rick (Donald Faison) are struggling to get pregnant. Their close friend, Charlie (Terrence Jenkins), is a player who easily picks up beautiful, willing women but proudly announces that he loses interest in them as soon he sleeps with them. Charlie's sister, Sherry (Paula Patton), a therapist to the stars, fears he disdains commitment to help protect himself from loss, because their parents died when he was young. Hoping to help him form a real emotional attachment, Charlie's friends bet that he can't see just one woman for the entire period leading up to the wedding. He takes the challenge but picks Eva (Cassie Ventura), a woman who warns him that she wants a "no strings" arrangement. Charlie falls for her anyway, only to make a discovery that sends him into a tailspin.
Is it any good?
The appealing cast of THE PERFECT MATCH convincingly depicts modern men and women. These are relatable people who are struggling to sort out relationship issues, impending parenthood, a fair distribution of responsibilities between partners, and the balance between work and love. The women are all as smart as -- if not smarter than -- their men; one makes more money than her fiancé, which he seems to applaud. And the ending is refreshingly un-Hollywood, more about promising good things to come than outright "happy." Charlie may not end up where you think he will, but he does seem to mature into someone who will make real love a priority in his life.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about how The Perfect Match portrays sex and relationships. What does sex mean to the various characters? Parents, talk to your teens about your own values on these topics.
The movie depicts equally intelligent men and women co-existing as peers in relationships, at work, and in striving for success. How does the real world measures up to this standard?
- In theaters: March 11, 2016
- On DVD or streaming: July 19, 2016
- Cast: Terrence Jenkins, Cassie Ventura, Dascha Polanco, Donald Faison
- Director: Bille Woodruff
- Studio: Lionsgate
- Genre: Romance
- Topics: Friendship
- Run time: 86 minutes
- MPAA rating: R
- MPAA explanation: sexuality, some nudity, and language throughout
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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.