Mr. Wonderful

MPAA Rating: PG-13

Entertainment: +2 1/2

Content: -2

MR. WONDERFUL is a film about the perils of divorce and the "face" of true love. Gus (Matt Dillon) is a blue collar Italian plagued with high alimony payments. He plots to get his ex-wife, Leonora (Annabella Sciorra), remarried to someone else. On the other side of the Bronx, Leonora delights in the intellectual stimulation college offers. She is currently romantically involved with one of her professors (William Hurt). But problems arise when Leonora realizes the shallowness of their relationship. She allows Gus to find her a Mr. Wonderful. But after a string of disastrous blind dates, she refuses any more matchmaking. Meanwhile, Gus attempts to face his fear of commitment as he and his girlfriend, Rita (Mary Louise Parker) move in together. By the end, both Gus and Leonora find the value of loving for the long haul. Acting in the film is competent and the lead characters are likeable. MR. WONDERFUL isn't a great film, but it may very well appeal to young adults.

This film contains a definite message that the effects of divorce can be very complicated. The film deals head-on with a common misconception about marriage today. Gus and Leonora both thought that the other was the source of their unhappiness during their marriage. But they are still unhappy now that they are divorced. Ultimately they realize that sleeping around is no substitute for real loving. MR. WONDERFUL could have been a truly romantic film with a strong anti-divorce message. Unfortunately, however, the viewer is the intimate witness of Gus's and Leonora's formication and adultery in four or five scenes of implied sexual intercourse, some with near nudity. The film's flippant attitude about sex outside of marriage sends the wrong message to young people. In one "right on" scene, however, Gus condemns the professor for cheating on his wife. Many obscenities and several regular profanities in the dialogue are totally superfluous. The scenes of couples in bed, crude references to sex and obscenities diminish the overall effectiveness and appeal of the film.

Preview Reviewer: Krista Kay Bontrager
Warner Bros., 4000 Warner Blvd., Burbank, CA 91522

The following categories contain objective listings of film content which contribute to the subjective numeric Content ratings posted to the left and on the Home page.

Crude Language: Few (3) times - Moderate

Obscene Language: Many (13) times (f-word 2; s-word 3; other 8)

Profanity: Several (8) times - Regular 6; Exclamatory 2

Violence: Moderate and Mild few times (electrical shock and minor property damage once)

Sex: Implied several times, some with near nudity (unmarried couples)

Nudity: Near nudity few times (brief underwear, female)

Sexual Dialogue/Gesture: Several crude references to sex; sexually explicit conversations; fondling clothed female.

Drugs: Smoking and social drinking

Other: None

Running Time:
Intended Audience:

Click HERE for a PRINTER-FRIENDLY version of this review.