What's Your Number?

Movie review by
Sandie Angulo Chen, Common Sense Media
What's Your Number? Movie Poster Image
Raunchy romcom promotes double standards, stereotypes.
  • R
  • 2011
  • 106 minutes

Parents say

age 12+
Based on 5 reviews

Kids say

age 13+
Based on 8 reviews

A lot or a little?

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

Positive Messages

The movie has one overarching positive message -- that if you're truly in love, a person's romantic past shouldn't matter as much as your future together. There are also some valuable lessons about being yourself with the people you date and some cautionary tales about what can happen if you drink too much. The central couple shows how being friends with someone is a good basis for a relationship. On the negative side, the movie reinforces the idea that men and women should be held to different standards when it comes to sexual experience.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Although she's on a quest for love, Ally isn't a very good role model. She becomes obsessed with the "number" issue and ignores real love when faced with it because it doesn't fit in with her plan. Her mother, sister, and friends try to help but are judgmental and unkind about Ally's romantic troubles until the very end. The only understanding role model is Ally's father, who's only in two scenes. He convinces Ally to march to the beat of her own drum instead of conforming to everyone else's standards.

Violence

Except for Ally's various pratfalls, there's no violence.

Sex

Ally is shown kissing, making out, having sex with or in bed next to at least five different guys. Although there's only one sex scene (the camera only shows the couple from the waist up, and they both have tops on), there are nearly naked shots of three characters, plus several instances of rear-end nudity, a glimpse of skinny dipping (although no full frontal is shown), and lots of skin-baring lingerie and pajama shots. Other couples are shown kissing or dancing. An ex who's a gynecologist only recognizes Ally during her vaginal exam. Another ex, who's gay, propositions Ally to be his beard so he can advance politically. There are also many conversations about the pros and cons of various sexual positions, what counts as penetration, oral sex performance, "back door" action, the differences between premarital and marital sex, and other, more explicit references.

Language

Nearly every line of dialogue has strong language, including "f--k," "s--t," "d--k," "bitch," "whore," "slut," "a--hole," "ass," "bulls--t," "oh my God," and more are all said frequently. Kids use the F-word in one scene.

Consumerism

Several product placements in the movie, from Marie Claire (in which the infamous "numbers" article is published) to Apple -- Macbook, iPod -- to the Honda Fit, which Ally drives in a climactic sequence.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Ally drinks -- a lot, either with friends or alone. She gets drunk at least three times in the movie and one of those times ends up having a one-night stand she regrets. Ally and her sister's bridesmaids do shot after shot at a bar. At a wedding reception, people are shown drinking. Ally and Colin often drink beer or wine together.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that this romantic comedy is definitely of the crude, hard-R variety. While there are no graphic sex scenes, there are some nearly naked shots of three characters; constant discussion of sex, positions, and history; and a few mostly clothed shots of couples in bed together. Because the conversation about sex is so candid and the accompanying language so risque (the words "f--k," "s--t," "d--k" are said frequently, as are the various euphemisms for genitalia), this isn't the kind of romantic comedy that even high school-aged teens might be ready to see. Despite the raunchy humor, there's one good message in the film: that someone should love you for who you are, no matter how many romances are in your past.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byHAMMER77777 October 11, 2011

STANDARD

I LIKE THE DOUBLE STANDARD
Adult Written bydeadsilence12 October 15, 2011

Good but not appropriate for kids

It is a funny movie but full of foul language and nudity, although no frontal nudity.
Teen, 13 years old Written byYoung Movie Buff April 9, 2012

Great movie for mature 12 year olds to teenagers

This movie is great. Some scenes are a little raunchy but I certainly wouldn't call it a hard R comedy. In my country (new Zealand) it is R13 which means 1... Continue reading
Teen, 17 years old Written byemmaelizabeth August 16, 2012

Watch it!

Ok I loved this movie. Thought it was hilarious. I did watch it with my 13 year old sister. other then the talk about sex and bare butts i think it's fine

What's the story?

After breaking up with her boyfriend and losing her job, Ally Darling (Anna Faris) reads a Marie Claire article that changes her life. Ally is convinced that if she sleeps with more than 20 men (she's currently at 19), she'll never find the man of her life, so she decides to track down her 19 former lovers to see if they've changed enough to rekindle a romance. To aid in the man-hunting, Ally strikes a deal with her handsome lothario neighbor, Colin (Chris Evans), the kind of womanizer who prefers to love 'em and leave 'em after a one-night stand. In exchange for Colin's tracking abilities, Ally will let him use her place as an escape the mornings after his conquests. As they look for Ally's exes, the neighbors develop a friendship that could be more ... if Ally weren't so obsessed with her "number."

Is it any good?

Faris has natural comedy timing and talent that's deserving of a movie as critically acclaimed as Bridesmaids, but instead she executive produced this star vehicle that's forgettable and crass. Sure, Bridesmaids is raunchy, but in that Judd Apatow way that means there's a touching story of friendship and love at its core. So while Faris deserves props for willingly putting herself in cringe-worthy situations that other beautiful young actresses would vainly steer clear of, WHAT'S YOUR NUMBER? doesn't showcase her comedic gifts so much as show off the fact that women can speak as candidly (although still not as crudely) about sex as men.

One of the worst parts of the film is that it wastes the presence of so many great actors as Ally's exes. Andy Samberg, Anthony Mackie, Thomas Lennon, Martin Freeman, Dave Annable, and even Faris' own husband Chris Pratt have unfunny cameos that seem sloppily edited or, in the case of Samberg, exist more in the trailer than in the final cut of the movie. Evans is believably attractive as Colin (and what a change from his chaste superhero Captain America), but the character is a complete cliché. It would have been preferable for him to be a serial monogamist who was for some reason less experienced than Ally but still accepted her double-digit past. It's just too predictable -- and easy -- for a player way into the "300s" to think nothing about Ally's "20," and the disparity enforces the idea that a guy can be 10 times as promiscuous as a girl and it somehow equals out. Yes, the "I love you just the way you are" is sweet, but it's wrapped in a sadly distasteful comedy that isn't worthy of its stars.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the double standard involved with this movie's premise. Would this movie even work if the protagonist were a man? Why is a woman's "number" more controversial than a man's? Is this a positive message to send young women?

  • How does the movie portray Ally's various relationships? How do they compare to her relationship with Colin? Does the fact that she and Colin are friends before they become romantic make a difference? Teens: Do you know couples who started out as friends first? What are some other movies featuring a friends-to-more story?

Movie details

For kids who love romance

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