[Screen It]


(1999) (Matthew Perry, Neve Campbell) (PG-13)

Blood/Gore Disrespectful/
Bad Attitude
Tense Scenes
Moderate Minor Heavy None None
Mild None None None Heavy
Smoking Tense Family
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Romantic Comedy: A young architect finds himself falling for a tycoon's mistress despite that jeopardizing their business arrangement and the fact that everyone thinks he's gay.
Oscar Novak (MATTHEW PERRY) and his business partner, Peter Steinberg (OLIVER PLATT) are two up and coming Chicago architects who've approached local tycoon Charles Newman (DYLAN McDERMOTT) to financially back their design for revitalizing an old landmark into a multimillion dollar cultural center.

Impressed by their plans, Newman not only agrees to back them, but also asks Oscar if he can keep his eye on his mistress, Amy Post (NEVE CAMPBELL), a local glass blowing artist. Thinking she might be seeing any number of old boyfriends including football star Kevin Cartwright (CYLK COZART), Newman isn't worried about Oscar tagging along with her since everyone, including his assistant, Lenore (DEBORAH RUSH), believes that he's gay.

Sensing that their career enhancing project is on the line, Oscar reluctantly agrees to spy on Amy. Upon first seeing her, however, he's immediately smitten and she hits it off with him as well. That's probably because she thinks he's gay as well, and soon everyone in town believes the same, a fact that's quite funny to Peter since he's the gay one.

As Oscar becomes even more attracted to Amy, he must decide how to proceed with her, particularly as his gay reputation grows, and must deal with any number of complications, such as Amy finally meeting Newman's wife, Olivia (KELLY ROWAN), that threaten to upset the tycoon and thus ruin their deal.

If they're fans of anyone in the cast or of romantic comedies they might, but this one doesn't seem to have much kid buzz going for it.
For sex-related situations and language.
  • MATTHEW PERRY plays a rising architect who finds that he must spy on his financial backer's mistress and feign being gay to keep an important job. He uses some profanity.
  • NEVE CAMPBELL plays an independently spirited local artist who happens to be that tycoon's mistress. She also cusses some and briefly uses strong profanity.
  • DYLAN McDERMOTT plays the "germophobic" and manipulative tycoon who wants Oscar to spy on his mistress.
  • OLIVER PLATT plays Oscar's gay business partner who's concerned about their project being derailed due to Oscar's actions.
  • CYLK COZART plays a renowned football player who's come out of the closet and finds himself attracted to Oscar.


    Curious if this title is entertaining, any good, and/or has any artistic merit?
    Then read OUR TAKE of this film.

    (Note: The "Our Take" review of this title examines the film's artistic merits and does not take into account any of the possibly objectionable material listed below).

    The following is a brief summary of the content found in this PG-13 rated romantic comedy. Profanity is rated as heavy due to 1 use of the "f" word, while plenty of other profanities and colorful phrases are said. Sexually related comments are present (both heterosexual and homosexual), as is some fooling around (the exact extent is unknown), and some photos show both men and women's bare butts (with flags painted across part of them). In addition, a running gag throughout the film is that the main character is mistakenly believed to be gay.

    Two of the main characters are having an affair (he's married, she's not), with the man being a powerful tycoon who manipulates others (having the main character spy on his girlfriend). Beyond all of that, a moderate amount of drinking, some smoking, some violence (slapstick and a few punches), and the sounds of some people vomiting, the rest of the film's categories are mostly void of any major objectionable content.

    As always, however, should you still be concerned about the film's appropriateness for yourself or anyone else in your home, we suggest that you take a closer look at our detailed content listings.

  • Oscar and Peter celebrate winning Newman's backing by having champagne.
  • Oscar's buddies drink beer while watching a football game.
  • People have drinks at Amy's art opening reception.
  • Amy tells Oscar that she's going to buy him a drink.
  • Amy and Oscar have some champagne.
  • Some people at Peter's dinner party drink.
  • Oscar and his buddies have beer while watching football.
  • Amy and Oscar have drinks at a bar where others drink, including Cartwright who then has beer with the two of them.
  • We see one of Oscar's friends at an AA meeting.
  • Oscar's mother has a drink.
  • Oscar, Amy and her friends have margaritas.
  • People have drinks at a reception.
  • Oscar asks Amy where they're going and she says "to get really, really drunk." We then see them drinking in a bar (as do others).
  • Oscar's friends drink beer.
  • Newman's wife drinks champagne.
  • After eating some bad food, we hear some intestinal sounds coming from Oscar and then see him bend over and vomit (we don't see the vomit, but do hear the liquid sound). Amy then does the same (we hear the sounds) and later, another man vomits after coming out of the same place.
  • Newman and Amy have both for carrying on an affair and Newman then has Oscar spy on Amy since he doesn't trust her (he also manipulates Oscar and Peter, threatening to retract his financial backing).
  • Amy admits to dodging her landlord (for reasons unknown) and thus moves in with Oscar to hide from the landlord.
  • After promising never to lie to her again, Oscar does just that to Amy by spying for Newman and pretending to be gay.
  • None.
  • None.
  • Due to audio difficulties at our screening, the following should be considered a minimum.
  • Phrases: "Holy sh*t," "Deep sh*t," "Freaking out," "Kick some ass," "Kick some big ass," "Piss," "Honeys" (for women), "Screwed" (nonsexual), "Bitch slapped," "Beating the hell out of me," "Balls" (testicles), "Bastard," "Moron," "Freakin'," "Dork," "Dimwit," "A-hole," "Farts," "Nuts" (crazy), and "Shut up."
  • One scene features a radio falling into a bathtub and giving a man a non-lethal electric shock. Since it's played for laughs and the man isn't seriously hurt, some kids might get the wrong impression about that.
  • None.
  • None.
  • None.
  • Due to audio difficulties at our screening, the following should be considered a minimum.
  • At least 1 "f" word, 10 "s" words, 18 asses (1 used with "hole"), 3 damns, 2 hells, 1 crap, and 4 uses of "Oh my God," 3 each of "For Christ's sakes" and "Oh God," 2 of "God" and 1 use each of "Good God" and "My God" as exclamations.
  • Due to audio difficulties at our screening, the following should be considered a minimum (regarding sexually related dialogue/comments).
  • Oscar makes a comment about (what sounded like) a woman with three breasts.
  • We see Newman making out with Amy on a bed (while clothed).
  • Amy shows varying amounts of cleavage in different scenes, while some of her friends also show cleavage.
  • Several characters gossip about whether Oscar and Peter are gay lovers (one of them says, "They have sex. You know, with men"). At another point and as both Oscar and Peter are excited about winning Newman's support, Oscar says "I love you" to Peter (in a nonsexual, non-romantic way), but others here it and think they're gay (Peter is, Oscar isn't).
  • Oscar's friends talk about rumors that they've heard about Cartwright, particularly that "he's hung like an army mule" (referring to the size of his genitals). One of them then adds, "They call it the Ponderosa."
  • At an art reception we see several photographs of men and women's bare butts that have paintings of different country's flags painted across them. For one, Oscar comments (about a man's hairy butt), "I didn't know things were so hairy in Bosnia."
  • Having heard the rumors about Cartwright's size, Oscar slips and says upon meeting him that Cartright once held the college record "for most penis in a single season."
  • After accidentally hitting Oscar in the crotch, Amy asks, "How are your balls?" Later, after Oscar tells his buddies that he didn't do anything sexual with Amy, she comes by to visit and then asks, "Are your balls okay? Are they still sore?" that causes his buddies to react as if he did do something sexual with her.
  • Oscar says about Amy, "She's got an ass so sexy I struggle to understand it."
  • As Amy undresses to shower, we briefly and partially see her in her underwear.
  • Oscar says that he's for homosexuality if it "takes place between two gorgeous woman, or three."
  • Oscar's friends ask if he "scored" or "got lucky" with Amy and then ask if "she's really stacked." One then asks if she tied him up, if she's a dominatrix, and "You got it on with a hot, big-breasted dominatrix."
  • We see Newman and Amy making out in Oscar's place (where he's trying to sleep in the loft above them, but can hear the sounds of them fooling around). It's then suggested that the two fool around in some sort of sexual way, but to what extent is unknown).
  • Cartwright playfully tackles Oscar in the park and then lies on top of him while saying that he finds himself attracted to Oscar. Oscar then looks down toward their crotches and says "Evidently."
  • As Amy takes a bubble bath and invites Oscar into the bathroom with her (since she thinks he's gay) and asks him, "What are your thoughts on penis size?" (he replies that he hasn't organized his thoughts on that). She then says (about Cartwright), "He's got this giant thing..." She then changes the subject and says that she once had a lesbian experience in college where she and a Brazilian girl "experimented." She adds that she'd never tell a straight guy that because he'd tried to extract all the fine details about the encounter, and then adds that it's never like the Penthouse/Spice Channel male fantasies. She then offers to whisper in Oscar's ear what really happened and then does so, causing him to become flustered over the thought of it. As she then gets out of the tub (after asking him to turn around), he wipes away some steam and sees a reflection of her bare belly (but nothing else).
  • Recognizing Oscar on a bus, a gay man tries to hit on him. When Oscar then stands up, the man stares at Oscar's butt and crotch and smiles.
  • Tired of his friends thinking he's gay, Oscar mockingly says that he is and that he wants all of them sexually. Later, Oscar realizes he can't convince anyone that he's straight and says, "I'm never going to have sex again." Peter then jokingly says that's not true, that he will again, but maybe not with a woman.
  • Oscar and Amy watch an old movie on TV featuring a man and woman in bed where we see her bare back. As they talk about good lines in movies, she mentions, "I want to make mad, passionate love to you" as one of them.
  • After learning that he's been picked as gay man of the year, Oscar says that he hasn't done anything "or anyone" to deserve that.
  • Trying to cover for Oscar, Peter says that his business partner is "omni sexual," that he "swings every which way."
  • Oscar mentions he might have to sneak off to straight bars and have anonymous sex with women (since he might never ever shake the gay labeling).
  • We see two other men in bed together (but no activity).
  • Peter meets Cartwright and mentions that he's heard about the football player, but nothing specific. Cartwright then suggestively says that it's all true, causing Peter's eyes to open wide and him to start humming the theme from Ponderosa.
  • Amy and Oscar make out after she mentions that she gets the left side of the bed (suggesting that they're planning on sleeping together).
  • Olivia tells Newman to put on his red bikini briefs because she likes the way his butt looks in them.
  • Some women dancers in the closing credits wear some partially revealing clothing.
  • Peter holds an unlit cigar.
  • People smoke outside Amy's art opening reception.
  • Some people at Peter's dinner party smoke.
  • Another miscellaneous man smokes.
  • Some of Amy's friends smoke.
  • People smoke in a bar.
  • None (although a character is having an affair, his wife doesn't know and thus no conflicts arise).
  • Extramarital affairs.
  • Homosexuality and everyone believing Oscar to be gay.
  • One scene features a radio falling into a bathtub and giving a man a non-lethal electric shock. Since it's played for laughs and the man isn't seriously hurt, some kids might get the wrong impression about that.
  • There's some slapstick style humor including Amy accidentally hitting Oscar in the face and knocking him to the ground while trying to pull her shoe out of a hole, while trying to open a stuck car door she accidentally rips it off and hits Oscar in the crotch, Oscar opens a bottle of champagne and we hear the cork fly off and break something, Oscar trips and falls to the floor in Amy's place, Oscar burns his hands on a hot tray, one of Oscar's friends accidentally drops a barbell on a man's chest for whom he was spotting it, and a radio falls into a bathtub and gives a man a non-lethal electric shock.
  • We see Oscar's father reacting to hearing the news of his son being gay. As such, he kicks things around his garage, throws small statues to the driveway where they shatter and bangs his head against the garage with a bucket over his head.
  • Amy punches Oscar in the face and then does the same to Newman.

  • Reviewed October 9, 1999 / Posted October 22, 1999

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