My Best Friend's Girl
- No Rating Available
Tank is so bad at relationships that he actually makes other people fall in love again.
How's that again, you ask?
Here's the way it works: Your girlfriend's about to leave you 'cause she thinks there might be bigger, better, brighter fish in the sea. So you slip Tank a few Benjamins and ask him to go out with her. He does, acting like the biggest jerk she's ever seen. Suddenly, she feels pretty lucky to have you as her man. And everybody lives happily ever after.
Nobody's dumb enough to go through with a plan like that, you say?
In a Hollywood sex comedy, there are plenty of people who jump at the chance. Even Dustin—Tank's roommate who has seen firsthand just how appalling Tank's act is—falls for it. His best girl, Alexis, is slowly fading out of reach, so Dustin asks Tank to apply his special brand of "emotional terrorism" to the situation.
Tank has a moment or two of self-doubt. And he eventually decides he's such a horrible person that Alexis deserves better. He's right. And if the credits had started rolling at the precise moment he comes to that conclusion, it might have actually been a "positive element." But they don't. (And what happens next can easily be interpreted as the film's lowest low.)
There's an unintentional reinforcement of the idea that fathers who sow sinfulness in front of their children often reap kids who follow exactly in their footsteps.
For the express purpose of shocking and mocking, Tank takes a Christian girl on a date to a pizza parlor that's named Cheesus Crust. Murals on the wall insert pizzas into biblical scenes (such as the Last Supper), and servers use hyperbolic "holy" language to describe their food. Embarrassed and offended, the girl demands that they leave before blurting out, "You people are sinners!" Their server deadpans, "You people should have thought of that 19 years ago before you stopped my mom from going into that clinic."
Writers rarely run out of words. Give us an empty page and we'll usually fill it pretty quick. But this movie's irrationally obscene sexual content nearly renders me speechless. As clinically as possible, then, I'll summarize (only the worst of) what's featured in My Best Friend's Girl:
Visually, we see the series of sexual encounters Tank has with Alexis. She's often stripped down to panties and bra. He's often seen getting on top of her. A desk, a bed and a living room floor serve as "ambience." On the couple's first date, he takes her to a strip club where he gets a lap dance right in front of her. That topless "dancer" and her "colleagues" performing onstage wear only g-strings in the extended scene. (Alexis doesn't seem to mind any of this in the least.)
Verbally, dirty jokes rule. But "dirty joke" doesn't quite cover it: Dialogue ranges from quips about homosexual oral sex to graphic descriptions of rough (choking to the point of seizure) sex. Included in this explicit continuum are comments about sexual pain, injury and defecation, angry sex, anal sex, group sex, prostitution, lesbian fondling, gay sex, pedophilic priests, masturbation, ejaculation, periods, hemorrhoids, suckling breast milk and paying a girl to stream a sex video.
Dustin's addiction to pornography triggers quite a few gags. He totes around a crate full of movies. A snippet of one plays on his TV. And much is made of how comforting this habit is to him. In the end, it's the key to him finding his dream girl—a girl who carries in her purse a huge array of dildos and other sex toys.
Before Dustin dives into bed with that girl, Alexis tells him that waiting to have sex in a relationship is a ridiculous notion. "Sex isn't a step," she insists. "Being exclusive together is a step. Moving in together is a step."
Tank sexually assaults Alexis' mother by exposing himself to her and taunting her with a demand for oral sex. The camera lurks behind him as he drops his pants and underwear while standing inches from her face.
Alexis slaps Tank across the face several times. Other girls also either slap their boyfriends or throw wine in their faces. A man decks Tank. Tank purposefully causes an elderly woman to fall off a chair that's being hoisted into the air. And he jokes about abortion being the obvious answer to an unplanned pregnancy.
Crude or Profane Language
Close to 50 f-words, many of them used in sexual contexts. S-words clock in at around 20, with some of them used in sexual contexts, too. The c-word is hatefully hurled at least twice. Jesus' name is abused a handful of times. God's is tangled up with "d--n" a few times. "A--hole" is used more frequently than the characters' own names.
Many, many, many crude comments are made about sexual performance and the size of various body parts. And those body parts are referred to most often by vulgar slang. There are several obscene gestures made, some of them mimicking the motions of sex. An explicitly misogynistic 2 Live Crew song plays during a couple of scenes.
Drug and Alcohol Content
Beer, wine and hard liquor disappear at an astounding rate. And characters get drunk at every turn. Some of them also smoke incessantly.
Jokes are made about snorting coke and popping roofies.
Other Negative Elements
Tank does the worst job he possibly can at work—with no ill effects. Vulgar references to human excrement factors into several conversations. Tank vomits all over the dance floor at a wedding.
After Tank decides he's not good enough for Alexis—and after he pulls out all the stops in his effort to make her hate him and leave him—she eagerly takes him back. And that may well be the worst thing that happens in My Best Friend's Girl. The sexual content is shockingly disturbing. And the obscene language is, well, obscene. But it's the idea that good girls can't bring themselves to stay away from bad boys that's the real burn factor here.
"I hate you," Alexis says, seconds before the film fades to black. "I hate you," Tank returns. They hug. They kiss. And that's it.
OK, back to the good girl-bad boy thing: In no one's definition can Alexis be called good. But she's the closet thing to it in this sort of film. And even from their very first meeting, she's obsessively attracted to Tank. Why? Because he's a colossal cad. He's a boor, a churl, a lout and a Philistine, to quote the Merriam-Webster Collegiate Thesaurus. He's a guttersnipe, a vulgarian, a creep, a heel, a louse, a rat, a stinker. And she can't get enough of him. The worse he treats her, the better she likes it.
The Webster entry I looked at lists only one antonym for cad: gentleman. That's what boys and young men used to be taught to grow up into—if for no other reason than to make sure some girl would want to settle down with them. Not anymore. Not if they're learning their lessons from the likes of My Best Friend's Girl.
Other Belief Systems
Readability Age Range
Dane Cook as Tank; Kate Hudson as Alexis; Jason Biggs as Dustin; Diora Baird as Rachel; Lizzy Caplan as Ami; Riki Lindhome as Hilary; Alec Baldwin as Prof. Turner
Howard Deutch ( )