Reviewed by: Thaisha Geiger
My boyfriend wants to have sex. I don’t want to lose him. What should I do? Answer
How can I deal with temptations? Answer
How far is too far? What are the guidelines for dating relationships? Answer
What are the consequences of sexual immorality? Answer
|Featuring:||Justin Timberlake … Dylan
Mila Kunis … Jamie
Patricia Clarkson … Lorna
Jenna Elfman … Annie
Bryan Greenberg … Parker
Richard Jenkins … Mr. Harper
Woody Harrelson … Tommy
Nolan Gould … Sam
Andy Samberg … Quincy
Emma Stone … Kayla
|Producer:||Castle Rock Entertainment
Olive Bridge Entertainment
Jamie (Mila Kunis) is an executive headhunter in New York City, who recruits Dylan (Justin Timberlake) from Los Angeles in order to apply for the art director position at GQ magazine. After a charming tour of NYC, Jamie convinces Dylan to take the position and begin a new life in the Big Apple.
The two strike up a friendship and share how they both were recently dumped. Jamie’s boyfriend ended things, stating that she was too difficult emotionally. While Dylan’s girlfriend claimed he was too emotionally unavailable. One night, they both state that they miss sex and decide to include sex in their relationship with a couple of rules: no emotions, no relationships.
“Friends with Benefits” isn’t the anti-romantic comedy it advertises itself to be. At times, the film does poke fun at some of the cliché elements of romantic comedies, but even this film couldn’t entirely escape the requirements of its genre. Though the direction of the characters’ relationship is entirely predictable, the journey is stocked full of witty references to increase the laughs. Though there are some laughs, it left us with a rushed ending, which even used the epitome of romantic comedies: the dramatic declaration of love.
What makes the film notable are the performances. Mila Kunis and Justin Timberlake have good chemistry, and enough time is spent to allow them to develop a genuine friendship. Though Jamie and Dylan strive to have a friendship with the added benefit of uncommitted sex, some characters within the film tell them it’s a bad idea. One scene, in particular, felt realistic, when Jamie overhears Dylan saying awful things about her and how their having sex didn’t matter. Of course, she is crushed, and I felt this scene was well written to show that emotions are involved in physical intimacy.
Christians shouldn’t be surprised at the content of the film, especially given its title. With that warning and its accompanying rating, “Friends with Benefits” is an adult comedy with high amounts of sexual content. Though lessons are learned, premarital sex is treated as a normal part of relationships (1 Thessalonians 4:1-8).
Before agreeing to sex with seemingly no strings attached, Jamie says that she’s a good girl and pulls up her Bible app. She and Dylan put their hands on the Bible and swear to have no emotion or relationship during sex. Besides the obvious contradiction, James 5:12 reads:
“Above all, my brothers, do not swear—not by heaven or by earth or by anything else. Let your ‘Yes’ be yes and your ‘No’ no…”
Sexual jokes, discussions and profanity are used throughout the entire film. In all, there are at least 76 uses of vulgarity and profanity, including 21 sh_t and 25 f_ck. In addition, the words d_ck and c_ck are used often; p*ssy is used around 3 times. Since Dylan and Jamie are having sex without the complications of a relationship, they freely share their sexual quirks, such as sneezing during an orgasm, etc. They also give each other instructions and feedback during sex.
There are several sex scenes with the characters in different positions, and during one scene they give each other oral sex. Most of the nudity is covered up by the bed sheets. However, there are still some instances of it. About four times, a male’s backside is zoomed in on, in one instance, a female’s. The side of Jamie’s breasts are shown, as well. There’s a video displayed of a topless woman dipping her breasts into batter. There’s, also, a photo of a woman in scanty lingerie posted on a Web site, in the beginning of the film.
As a Christian, I cannot recommend “Friends with Benefits”, especially considering how I didn’t even mention every instance of sexual immorality within the film. This movie accurately displays some of the world’s current standard on casual sex (1 Corinthians 6:12-17). What we must remember is that this worldly standard is not of God and goes against Scripture.
See list of Relevant Issues—questions-and-answers.