Common Sense Note
Parents need to know that this is a review of the movie shown in theaters and not the unrated version with an alternate ending available on DVD.Parents also need to know that this deplorable teen comedy targets teens especially since it stars Heroes cheerleader Hayden Panettiere. But the movie is full of consequence-free underage drinking and teen sex. Teens drink beer, hard liquor, and champagne (the latter supplied by parents) and drive after doing so. Characters have a threesome (though nothing explicit is shown), there's a running conversation about one character's sexual orientation, and teen girls' naked backs are shown during a titillating locker room scene. Language is notably strong for a PG-13 movie, including "f--k" and many uses of "s--t." The main character also gets beaten up a lot, and his parents are iffy role models at best, providing the aforementioned alcohol and essentially encouraging him to have sex.
Several sexual situations and conversations, though only one actual "sex" scene ... which is a threesome. Two teen girls proposition a virginal boy and start kissing him; the next scene shows them all in bed together, with the sheets pulled up under their arms. Beth and her two friends also undress and shower in front of a guy, but you only see bare backs. Denis drops his pants and spends a scene or two in just his underwear. Conversations about erections, sexual orientation (one character may or not be gay), and misusing sexuality (Beth makes out with a clerk in order to buy beer). Plenty of innuendo and some additional kissing; at one point, Denis' head ends up in Beth's lap, and he sees her panties. Denis' dad tells him where to find his own stash of condoms and implicitly encourages Denis and Rich to have sex; later, Denis' parents are shown making out in a car -- when his dad's cell phone vibrates because a call is coming in, he proceeds to tuck it down his wife's skirt.
Denis is beaten up several times by Beth's pumped-up boyfriend and his equally buff pals. He ends up with visible, bleeding wounds and bruises. There are fist fights, jumps/falls out of windows, car crashes, and one humorous towel fight.
Surprisingly frequent use of strong language for a PG-13 film, including one use of "f--k" and many of "s--t." Other words include "p---y," "a--hole," "bitch," "hell," "oh my God," "damn," "boners," "slut," "goddamn," "ass," etc.
Yes, the movie is saying that high school need not be the peak of a popular teenager's existence, but there are a lot of misleading messages as well. Denis calls the crazy night of party hopping, law breaking, and hooking up "best night" of his life and the only part of high school he'll remember. And there are very few consequences for any of the teens' behavior; in fact, Denis' dad practically congratulates him on his wild night. On the plus side, Denis does help Beth feel better about herself and her future.
Mostly cars: Toyota Yaris and Hummer. Other brands shown/mentioned by name include Suzy Qs, Eggo waffles, Spider-Man underpants, and assorted other convenience store snacks/drinks.
Drugs / Tobacco /
Frequent underage drinking, including beer, hard liquor, and champagne (the latter provided by Denis' parents for his graduation party). Teens also purchase alcohol from a cashier who knows they're minors and drive cars after drinking (though it's never implied that they're completely drunk while driving). Occasional cigarette smoking; discussion of being drunk and what champagne "makes" one girl do (the implication is that it leads to sex). Discussion of cocaine use by Beth's older, angry boyfriend and his friends.