How to Be Single is about four young, single women in New York City. Alice (Dakota Johnson) decides that she needs a break from her long-term boyfriend, Josh (Nicholas Braun), and moves to New York to discover who she is. Robin (Rebel Wilson), a fun-loving party girl, befriends Alice and teaches her how to embrace being single. Alice’s older sister Meg (Leslie Mann) is trying to decide whether she wants to become a single mother. Lucy (Alison Brie) is trying to navigate the world of online dating to find her soulmate.


Relationship breakdown, drug and alcohol abuse, death of a parent, sex


How to Be Single has some violence. For example:

  • Tom’s girlfriend slaps him across the face after she sees him kissing another girl.
  • People have verbal fights.

Content that may disturb children

Under 5
In addition to the violent scenes mentioned above, How to Be Single has some scenes that could scare or disturb children under five years. For example:

  • Several scenes show a woman in labour and giving birth.
  • Robin runs in front of a taxi intentionally so that she’ll be hit by it and get a free ride.

From 5-8
Children in this age group are likely to be scared or disturbed by the scenes mentioned above, and also by an emotionally confronting scene in which David openly tells his young daughter how her mother died.

From 8-13
Children in this age group might also be scared or disturbed by some of the scenes mentioned above.

Over 13
Younger children in this age group might also be disturbed by some of the scenes mentioned above.

Sexual references

How to Be Single has frequent sexual references and innuendo. For example:

  • Several scenes show people dancing in a sexual way in clubs and bars.
  • There’s a lot of crude sexual humour in this movie.

Alcohol, drugs and other substances

How to Be Single shows some use of substances. For example:

  • The movie frequently shows people drinking alcohol in bars and getting drunk to the point of forgetting the previous night.
  • The movie shows drinking as an enjoyable way to solve your problems.
  • Robin wakes up with ‘weed’ in her hair and tests positive on a drug test. She is also shown crushing some pills and sniffing them to get over a hangover.

Nudity and sexual activity

How to Be Single has some nudity and sexual activity. For example:

  • People frequently kiss and have sex, both with their partners and with strangers.
  • Both men and women are shown in their underwear, and a man shows his naked bottom.

Product placement

The following products are displayed or used in this movie: Apple and Nike.

Coarse language

How to Be Single has some coarse language.

Ideas to discuss with your children

How to Be Single is a comedy about friendship and being single.

Although How to Be Single might appeal to younger teenagers, this is a movie for adults and older teenagers. Because of its sex scenes, crude humour, coarse language and substance use, we don’t recommend this movie for children under 15 years old.

The main message from this movie is that you should make the most of being single because it gives you a chance to find out who you are. 

Values in this movie that you could reinforce with children include friendship, independence and resilience.

If your teenage child sees this movie, you could talk together about issues like the real-life consequences of getting drunk, taking drugs and having sex with strangers.