"Learning to Live and Love Together"
What You Need To Know:
Despite its formulaic plot, GUESS WHO provides enough good clean fun for teenagers and adults. The cast does a good job, especially Bernie Mac as the loving, but overprotective, father (should there be any other kind?). Ultimately, the movie’s worldview is a Christian one about learning to live and love together. The father even makes a couple comments about keeping a Christian home. The movie contains some light sexual innuendo and foul language, however, so caution for children is advised.
(CC, B, LL, V, S, A, M) Strong Christian worldview with some moral content, but in a comic vein, with some foul language and light sexual innuendo, including engaged couple clearly lives together and sleeps together; 12 obscenities (nothing seriously heavy) and three light profanities; some comical violence such as competitive go-kart racing with drivers deliberately bumping the opponent’s kart, go-karts smash through hedge and man knocks fez off Shriner’s head; light sexual innuendo such as unmarried couple clearly appears to be sleeping together and living together, but nothing shown, and comments like “shaking the sheets” and “Don’t say bone in my house”; no nudity; alcohol use; and, lying and white man is encouraged to tell some ethnic jokes, but black characters get upset when he goes too far.
GUESS WHO is a funny, breezy comedy that reverses the story of the Stanley Kramer classic GUESS WHO’S COMING TO DINNER. Though not as brilliantly satisfying and clever as HITCH, it is a cleaner, more family-friendly movie. It’s certainly a lot more family-friendly than the MEET THE PARENTS movies with Ben Stiller, which have similar plots to GUESS WHO.
GUESS WHO stars Ashton Kutcher as Simon Green, a young successful white stockbroker who’s become engaged to a beautiful black artist named Theresa Jones, played by Zoë Saldaña. Theresa wants to announce their engagement to her parents, Percy and Marilyn, during a party celebrating their 25th anniversary.
Theresa hasn’t told her parents, however, that Simon is white, and Simon hasn’t told Theresa that he just quit his job because of an ethical disagreement with his boss. To make matters worse, Theresa’s father Percy is indignant when Theresa presents her decidedly Caucasian boyfriend.
Once over his initial shock, Percy begins grilling Simon about sports. Simon becomes flustered and boasts about being a test driver for a famous NASCAR driver. Simon’s lie only increases Percy’s suspicions. Simon repeatedly tries to make a good impression, but Percy rebuffs him at every turn – with humorous results. Their conflict eventually causes problems between Simon and Theresa and problems between Percy and Marilyn.
Despite its formulaic plot, GUESS WHO provides enough good clean fun for teenagers and adults. The cast does a good job, especially Bernie Mac as the loving, but overprotective, father (should there be any other kind?). Ashton Kutcher plays well against Bernie’s take-no-prisoners style. GUESS WHO contains, however, some light sexual innuendo and foul language requiring a caution for older children. For example, Theresa’s father makes a joke about “shaking the sheets” with his wife, and it is clear that Theresa and Simon are sleeping together, which further alienates Simon from Percy. This content is done more tastefully than other romantic comedies, however, such as the aforementioned HITCH. GUESS WHO also contains some positive statements by Theresa’s father that he runs a Christian home.
Ultimately, the movie’s worldview is a Christian one about learning to live and love together, but MOVIEGUIDE® advises caution for children.