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"THE GOOD GIRL"
(2002) (Jennifer Aniston, Jake Gyllenhaal) (R)

Alcohol/
Drugs
Blood/Gore Disrespectful/
Bad Attitude
Frightening/
Tense Scenes
Guns/
Weapons
Heavy Mild Extreme Minor Minor
Imitative
Behavior
Jump
Scenes
Music
(Scary/Tense)
Music
(Inappropriate)
Profanity
Mild None Minor None Heavy
Sex/
Nudity
Smoking Tense Family
Scenes
Topics To
Talk About
Violence
Extreme Mild Heavy Moderate *Mild


QUICK TAKE:
Drama: Unhappy with her life, a married discount store clerk has an affair with a younger coworker.
PLOT:
Justine Last (JENNIFER ANISTON) is a married, 30-year-old discount store clerk who's dissatisfied with her life. Not only is she in an unrewarding, dead-end job working with the likes of Gwen (DEBORAH RUSH) and Cheryl (ZOOEY DESCHANEL) for store manager Jack Field (JOHN CARROLL LYNCH), but her marriage is disappointing as well.

Although her husband, Phil (JOHN C. REILLY), has a job, he spends most of his free time hanging out with his painting partner, Bubba (TIM BLAKE NELSON), getting high and wondering why he and Justine haven't had a baby yet.

Tired of the way things have turned out and store security guard Corny (MIKE WHITE) trying to get her to attend Bible study classes, Justine takes an interest in Holden Worther (JAKE GYLLENHAAL), a 22-year-old who's just started working at Retail Rodeo with her.

An aspiring writer, Holden still lives with his emotionally distant parents, but becomes instantly smitten with Justine, which also holds true for her as both believe they've found a kindred spirit in the other. The two soon become lovers, with Justine trying to keep that secret from Phil who's suddenly decided to clean up his act and become a better husband.

As the affair continues, Justine's guilt increases and she begins to feel suffocated under Holden's growing obsession with her, all of which leads to some unexpected developments for everyone involved.

WILL KIDS WANT TO SEE IT?
Unless they're fans of someone in the cast, it doesn't seem very likely.
WHY THE MPAA RATED IT: R
For sexuality, some language and drug content.
CAST AS ROLE MODELS:
  • JENNIFER ANISTON plays a retail store clerk who's dissatisfied with most everything about her life. Accordingly, she ends up having an affair with Holden, reluctantly sleeps with Bubba as part of a blackmail scheme, and lies about all of it to everyone. She also uses strong profanity and ends up pregnant from one of her encounters.
  • JAKE GYLLENHAAL plays her young, troubled and idealistic co-worker who becomes enamored with her. They eventually have an affair and he becomes even more obsessed with her. He also uses strong profanity, smokes a few times, drinks heavily and robs a store (we see the aftermath rather than the actual acts of the latter two).
  • JOHN C. REILLY plays Justine's painter husband who sits around with Bubba drinking beer and getting high. He eventually starts to pay attention to her needs at about the same time he starts losing her. He uses some profanity.
  • TIM BLAKE NELSON plays his best friend and fellow painter who also drinks and smokes pot. He also ends up coercing Justine into having sex with him in exchange for not telling Phil about her affair.
  • ZOOEY DESCHANEL plays one of Justine's co-workers who applies radical make-up jobs to customers and briefly uses strong profanity.
  • MIKE WHITE plays the security guard at the store who tries to encourage Justine to attend Bible study sessions.
  • DEBORAH RUSH plays an older co-worker and friend of Justine's at the store.
  • JOHN CARROLL LYNCH plays the store's manager.
  • CAST, CREW, & TECHNICAL INFO

    HOW OTHERS RATED THIS MOVIE


    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).


    OUR WORD TO PARENTS:
    Here's a brief summary of the content found in this R-rated drama. Profanity consists of at least 8 "f" words, while other expletives and colorful phrases also occur. Some sexually related dialogue is also present, as are various sexual encounters that include movement, sounds and partial nudity (while a man's full frontal and rear nudity is briefly seen after sex). Several instances of male masturbation are also present.

    Various characters have varying degrees of bad attitudes including a married woman having an affair and her husband's best friend who blackmails her into having sex with him. Tense family material occurs in the form of an unhappy marriage and the effects of her having an affair.

    Violence consists of a man striking a woman as well as off-screen violence and two deaths (one by accidental food poisoning, the other a suicide by gunshot). Various characters drink, one smokes and others smoke pot and are noted as being "potheads."

    Should you still be concerned about the film's appropriateness for yourself or anyone else in your home, you may want to look more closely at our detailed listings for more specific information regarding the film's content.


    ALCOHOL OR DRUG USE
  • Phil and Bubba have beer in front of them and Justine comments that they're stoned and that they'll end up doing something stupid while high.
  • We see that Phil and Bubba have been smoking pot and see Phil smoking a joint. Justine again calls them on their actions and refers to them as "potheads."
  • Holden admits to having a drinking problem in the past.
  • Phil and Bubba have beer in front of them.
  • Phil has a beer.
  • Justine reads a story written by Holden that's essentially about himself and it states that the main character started drinking and taking all sorts of drugs.
  • Phil and Bubba drink beer.
  • Phil has a beer.
  • We see that Phil and Bubba have been smoking pot again.
  • We see a flashback of Phil, Justine and Bubba holding or drinking beer.
  • Holden shows up drunk and admits to being that and that he'll be that way the rest of his life.
  • Phil, Bubba and his date drink in Phil and Justine's home and then do so again in a restaurant in a later scene.
  • After Phil learns of Justine's affair, he states that he needs to get stoned and she says that's okay.
  • BLOOD/GORE
  • Holden pokes his palm with a pencil to elicit some drops of blood for a letter he's writing to Justine (we see a few as well as him smearing them onto the letter).
  • We see and hear Gwen vomiting from eating some bad blackberries.
  • We hear that a person committed suicide via a gunshot, but don't see the act. We do see the body lying on a motel bed, but don't see any blood.
  • Justine has a bruise on her face and Corny has a black eye (after both are hit in separate scenes).
  • DISRESPECTFUL/BAD ATTITUDE
  • Cheryl tells a customer, "F*ck you very much" (instead of "Thank you, very much").
  • A customer admits to coming into the store for a free application of makeup with no intent of buying any.
  • Justine has an affair with Holden and then tries to cover it up and lies about it to others.
  • Faced with his imposed deadline of never seeing him again, Justine drops off a very sick Gwen at the hospital (rather than go in with her) so that she can go and meet Holden.
  • Holden ends up becoming obsessed with Justine and having them run off together. We eventually hear that he robs the store's safe so that they can have "run away" money.
  • Bubba indicates that he knows of Justine's infidelity and tells her that if she knows what's good for her, that she'll meet him at his place the following day. She does and he then proceeds to tell her about his idolization of Phil having Justine and that to finally break that off, she'll have to sleep with him. When she refuses, he states that he'll tell Phil if she doesn't, so she reluctantly does.
  • Realizing she needs to get Holden out of her life, Justine buys some blackberries that she believed were responsible for a friend's death and has him eat them (although she eventually feels guilty and makes him stop, but nothing happens to him).
  • Justine lets Phil think that her lover was someone else other than Holden (resulting in that person being beaten up).
  • FRIGHTENING SCENES
  • We hear that a person committed suicide via a gunshot, but don't see the act. We do see the body lying on a motel bed, but don't see any blood (the wide-eyed facial expression of the dead victim might be unsettling for some viewers).
  • GUNS/WEAPONS
  • Handgun: Used to shoot open a lock and commit suicide (we hear about but don't see the actual incidents).
  • IMITATIVE BEHAVIOR
  • Phrases: "F*ck you very much" (said instead of "Thank you, very much"), "Who wants a f*cking baby?" "You're so f*cking afraid it makes me sick," "F*ck (all of) them," "Everything turns to sh*t," "Who gives a sh*t?" "You don't know sh*t," "Big blue ass," "You don't get paid to pick your crack," "Jeez Louise," "Slut," "What the hell?" "You're freaking me out," "Whore" and "Out on his ass."
  • Holden pokes his palm with a pencil to elicit some drops of blood for a letter he's writing to Justine (we see a few as well as him smearing them onto the letter).
  • Realizing she needs to get Holden out of her life, Justine buys some blackberries that she believed were responsible for a friend's death and has him eat them (although she eventually feels guilty and makes him stop, but nothing happens to him).
  • We hear that a person committed suicide via a gunshot, but don't see the act. We do see the body lying on a motel bed, but don't see any blood.
  • JUMP SCENES
  • None.
  • MUSIC (SCARY/TENSE)
  • A tiny bit of such music briefly plays.
  • MUSIC (INAPPROPRIATE)
  • None.
  • PROFANITY
  • At least 8 "f" words, 4 "s" words, 1 slang term for male genitals ("p*cker"), 1 slang term for breast ("boob"), 3 asses, 3 hells, 2 damns, 6 uses of "Oh God," 5 of "Oh my God" and 1 use each of "G-damn," "For Christ's sakes," "God awful" and "Jesus" as exclamations.
  • SEX/NUDITY
  • We see Justine and Phil in bed together, but they're only sleeping.
  • Bubba states that if he were a woman (after Phil brings up a philosophical point of what it must be like to be one), he'd be a "slut" and then adds that it would a "lesbian slut."
  • Justine tells Phil that smoking pot lowers his sperm (he asks, "Lowers it to where?").
  • In her parked car outside his parents' house, Holden puts his hand on Justine's clothed thigh and then tries to kiss her, but she stops him, stating that she's married.
  • Phil mentions something more about his sperm count and having a doctor check it.
  • We see a passing overhead shot of Holden lying on his bed masturbating. We hear the sound of that as well as see some related arm movement, but the shot is from his waist up so we don't see anything explicit.
  • Holden suggests that he and Justine go to his house or just park the car to have sex, but they end up in a motel room. They briefly kiss while standing and we then see and hear them having sex with him on top of her (seen from beside them with the lower halves of their bodies under the sheets) with a great deal of movement (in partial shadows), some very brief views of parts of her bare breasts, and related sounds from both.
  • We see Holden and Justine passionately making out and partially disrobing (no nudity) in the store's stockroom.
  • Holden and Justine make out some more in the storage room and it's implied that they have more sex there and/or in the motel room that we see them visiting during a montage of their time spent together.
  • We see the two of them in bed after sex and see their bare shoulders as they talk. They kiss some more and she briefly climbs on top of him (no nudity or sexual movement).
  • Justine mentions that Holden wanted to go skinny dipping and make love (we briefly see him in the cold water while she sits clothed on the bank, but nothing else happens and there's no nudity). However, we do later see them making out in a parked car.
  • After Justine repeats Corny's line about "The couple that prays together, stays together," Phil says he thought it was "The couple that lays together, stays together."
  • Justine mentions that the thought of her making love to someone other than Phil upset Bubba, and that he now viewed her as a "whore." She then tells Bubba that she's not going to sleep with him (as a way of ending his personal saga of idolizing Phil being married to her), but he then tells her she'd destroy her marriage and break Phil's heart if she doesn't have sex with him (as he'd otherwise tell Phil of her affair).
  • We see Bubba having sex on top of Justine with movement and his sounds, but no nudity (seen from above the bed). She's not thrilled to be participating (he's blackmailing her) and gets up once they're done. We then see him with just a sheet around him as he follows her outside his house, but his dog then pulls away the sheet and we see brief male full frontal and rear nudity.
  • Phil wants Justine to go along with him to the doctor for his sperm count because he has to "jism into a cup" and worries that he can't do it.
  • After catching Justine with Bubba, Holden wants to know if she's been with every guy in the state. He then mentions something about her and every "p*cker" in front of her.
  • Bubba asks Justine how he stacks up against Phil "where it counts" (in bed and/or in penis size).
  • Phil requests that Justine join him in a room where he's supposed to produce a semen sample for some lab work. He states that he can't do this on his own and needs help. She then asks if he's never done it (masturbate) on his own, and he states not in a place like this or where he has to hand over the results. He then says, "Let me hold your boob" and then proceeds to grope her clothed breast while masturbating (we hear the sounds, but don't see him doing so while standing).
  • Phil asks Justine, "Have you been sleeping around behind my back?"
  • SMOKING
  • Holden smokes several times.
  • TENSE FAMILY SCENES
  • Justine and Phil don't have a great marriage and that gets worse when she has an affair and he eventually finds out about it.
  • Holden's relationship with his emotionally distant parents isn't great.
  • TOPICS TO TALK ABOUT
  • Affairs, and how people try to use them to bring happiness into their otherwise unhappy, married lives.
  • The old "grass is always greener" theme that plays in the film.
  • Smoking pot and lowered fertility.
  • VIOLENCE
  • For the below, please note what is actually seen versus what we hear about, but don't see.
  • Holden pokes his palm with a pencil to elicit some drops of blood for a letter he's writing to Justine (we see a few as well as him smearing them onto the letter).
  • We hear that a person died from eating bad blackberries (after getting sick from eating them).
  • Holden violently swipes some boxes from a shelf in anger.
  • Justine pushes Holden out of her parked car to the parking lot.
  • We hear that a person committed suicide via a gunshot, but don't see the act. We do see the body lying on a motel bed, but don't see any blood.
  • Phil slaps Justine quite hard across the face after she admits to having an affair.
  • We see a person the next day after being jumped by two men (the victim has a black eye and an arm in a sling).



  • Reviewed July 15, 2002 / Posted August 16, 2002

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