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One Day

MPAA Rating: PG-13-Rating (MPAA) for sexual content, partial nudity, language, some violence and substance abuse.

Reviewed by: Joseph Yates

Moviemaking Quality:

Primary Audience:
Romance Comedy
1 hr. 48 min.
Year of Release:
USA Release:
August 19, 2011 (wide—1,600+ theaters)
DVD: November 29, 2011
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Relevant Issues
Copyright, Focus Features


TRUE LOVE—What is true love and how do you know when you have found it? Answer

Sex, Love and Relationships
Learn how to make your love the best it can be. Discover biblical answers to questions about sex, marriage, sexual addictions, and more.

accidental death

loss of loved one

male female relationship

father son relationship

father daughter relationship

dreams of making the world a better place



Featuring: Anne HathawayEmma Morley
Jim SturgessDexter Mayhew
Patricia ClarksonAlison Mayhew
See all »
Director: Lone Scherfig—“An Education,” “Italian for Beginners
Producer: Color Force
Film Four
Random House Films
See all »
Distributor: Focus Features

“Twenty years. Two people…”

Copyrighted, Focus Features

“One Day,” a story of an on-again off-again romance, comes to us with a tale of a guy and a girl who become best friends and romantic companions. The film is set in the United Kingdom starting in the 1980s and running all the way through 2011. The film’s title comes into play when we realize that every day shown on screen is a July 15th.

Dexter (played by Jim Sturgess) and Emma (Anne Hathaway) meet the night of their highschool graduation. Inebriated, they sleep together that night. Thus, they are forever friends throughout their life…

Foul language is not very often heard, with 1 f-word, several “b-st-rds,” several uses of the British vulgarity “bloody,” and a couple other mild profanities. Sexual content, although not graphic, runs throughout the movie. We know several characters have had sex, we hear mention of one character attending orgies, hear mention of group sex, and see a character about to have an affair.

PURITY—Should I save sex for marriage? Answer


“One Day” takes two very different people, both extremely ambitious, and shows the progression of their lives. They remain best friends through life, even though each has their own boyfriend/girlfriend. For his part, Dexter becomes very narcissistic, serving only his own pleasures. He is constantly drunk, for a great while, even showing up to visit his ailing mother while drunk. He takes on a very playboy-esque attitude. The love of Emma, however, constantly draws him back to being clean, sober and kind. Eventually, this changes him.

As Christians and humans, in general, we are drawn to stories of redemption because of the greatest redemption narrative: that of Jesus Christ on the cross. The Apostle Paul said that “In him we have redemption through his blood” (Ephesians 1:7). Despite this redemption narrative, “One Day” barely misses the mark of goodness. Almost. Almost only counts in horseshoes and handgrendades, right?

Violence: Moderate / Profanity: Moderate / Sex/Nudity: Moderate

See list of Relevant Issues—questions-and-answers.

Viewer CommentsSend your comments
Positive—I really enjoyed this movie, despite its slightly melancholy tone. The storyline was unique… and Anne Hathaway and Jim Sturgess were great.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Average / Moviemaking quality: 4½
Kadie Jo, age 19 (USA)
Negative—I didn’t care for this movie at all and found it very offensive. I am appalled that a popular Christian magazine gave it such a high rating. The message of how NOT to live your life comes through loud and clear, and it shows the long term consequences of sin. It also shows that true love is not all about sex, but developing a friendship first and being there for someone through the difficult and the good.

However, if you are expecting a “feel good” movie with a traditional happy ending and all the loose ends tied up nicely, this movie is not for you. I left feeling depressed, due to a tragedy in the storyline, and repulsed by the nudity and sex scenes. There is also a bit of swearing and vulgar talk, as well as excessive drinking of alcohol. Anne Hathaway is a great actress and did a very good acting performance. However, the morals contained were pretty bad from a Christian perspective.

I found the end rather hard to follow. I wasn’t sure if it was what really happened or what the character wished had happened. I would recommend saving your money for something with a better and cleaner storyline.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Very Offensive / Moviemaking quality: 3
Kathy, age 51 (Canada)
Negative—I came to this movie hoping for a nice love story. What I found was a poorly made, offensive movie. It is a long, drawn out compilation of one date over several years, that is difficult to sit through. I am not sure what the climax of the plot was supposed to be, but most movies today never have a well developed plot. There is a lot of nudity, full frontal included, that I found shocking and extremely offensive. I cannot believe this is allowed for this rating. This should definitely been an R rated movie, in my opinion.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Extremely Offensive / Moviemaking quality: 2
Camille, age 46 (USA)

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