My One and Only

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Not recommended under 15 (Themes, Coarse language)

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This topic contains:

  • overall comments and recommendations
  • details of classification and consumer advice lines for My One and Only
  • a review of My One and Only completed by the Australian Council on Children and the Media (ACCM) on 11 March 2010.

Overall comments and recommendations

Children under 15 Not recommended due to adult themes and coarse language.
Children over the age of 15 OK for this age group

About the movie

This section contains details about the movie, including its classification by the Australian Government Classification Board and the associated consumer advice lines. Other classification advice (OC) is provided where the Australian film classification is not available.

Name of movie: My One and Only
Classification: M
Consumer advice lines: Infrequent coarse language
Length: 107 minutes

ACCM review

This review of the movie contains the following information:

A synopsis of the story

My One and Only is based on the childhood story of actor, George Hamilton.  Set it in the 1950s it begins with Ann (Renee Zellweger) catching her husband Dan (Kevin Bacon), a famous bandleader, in bed with another woman.  Ann decides there and then to leave her husband. She takes off with her teenage boys George (Logan Lerman) and Robbie (Mark Rendell) on a cross country road trip in search of a substitute husband and father who is able to keep them all in the manner to which they have become accustomed. 

The road trip proves to be an awakening for Ann as her search for a suitable beau leads her through many adventures, some frightening, some disappointing and others comical.  Along the way George challenges his mother’s self-absorbed nature and questions her devotion to him as his mother.  Ann’s good intentions, although often overshadowed by her flamboyant and vain exterior, are evident in the end as she learns that she does not need a husband to prove her devotion and loyalty to her sons.


Children and adolescents may react adversely at different ages to themes of crime, suicide, drug and alcohol dependence, death, serious illness, family breakdown, death or separation from a parent, animal distress or cruelty to animals, children as victims, natural disasters and racism. Occasionally reviews may also signal themes that some parents may simply wish to know about.

Infidelity; Death of a parent; Divorce

Use of violenceinfo

Research shows that children are at risk of learning that violence is an acceptable means of conflict resolution when violence is glamourised, performed by an attractive hero, successful, has few real life consequences, is set in a comic context and / or is mostly perpetrated by male characters with female victims, or by one race against another.

Repeated exposure to violent content can reinforce the message that violence is an acceptable means of conflict resolution. Repeated exposure also increases the risks that children will become desensitised to the use of violence in real life or develop an exaggerated view about the prevalence and likelihood of violence in their own world.

There is some use of violence in this movie including the following:

  • Ann’s fiancé chases Ann aggressively after she donates $500 to charity without his knowledge.  Ann runs away from him with her son George following them.  George jumps on the man’s back in an attempt to stop him from hurting his mother and the man throws George off his back.  Ann stops her fiancé from hurting them by threatening him with a poker.
  • A man with whom Ann goes out to dinner is aggressively kissing her in his car.  When Ann tells him to stop he becomes violent towards her, pushes her out of the car and drives away.
  • Robbie and his mother pick up a hitchhiker who later pulls a knife on Ann and threatens to ‘slice her right open’.  Robbie pulls a gun and after some provocation shoots at the hitchhiker’s feet.
  • There is a reference to a man who has attempted to kill himself in the past
  • Ann slaps George hard across the face after he says that he no longer wants to live with her
  • George is told that his father has died of a heart attack and is visibly distressed

Material that may scare or disturb children

Under fiveinfo

Children under five are most likely to be frightened by scary visual images, such as monsters, physical transformations.

Children in this age group are likely to be scared by the violent scenes described above

Aged five to eightinfo

Children aged five to eight will also be frightened by scary visual images and will also be disturbed by depictions of the death of a parent, a child abandoned or separated from parents, children or animals being hurt or threatened and / or natural disasters.

Children in this age group are likely to be scared by the violent scenes described above

Aged eight to thirteeninfo

Children aged eight to thirteen are most likely to be frightened by realistic threats and dangers, violence or threat of violence and / or stories in which children are hurt or threatened.

Children in this age group may also be upset by some of the violent scenes described above.

Thirteen and overinfo

Children over the age of thirteen are most likely to be frightened by realistic physical harm or threats, molestation or sexual assault and / or threats from aliens or the occult.

Children in this age group may also be upset by some of the violent scenes described above.

Product placement

The following products are displayed or used in this movie:

  • Coke
  • Greyhound coaches
  • Cadillac

Sexual references

There are some sexual references in this movie, including

  • Ann is mistakenly arrested for soliciting behaviour (prostitution) after she approaches a man in a bar to talk to him

Nudity and sexual activity

There is some nudity and sexual activity in this movie, including:

  • Ann catches her husband in bed with another woman.  He has boxer shorts on and the woman is covered only by a sheet. 
  • Dan is seen kissing a woman seductively.  Her dress falls to the ground but only her bare shoulders are seen.
  • Ann is seen kissing a man in his car.  When she asks him to stop he continues to kiss her.  He then becomes aggressive when she refuses to go upstairs to his room.
  • A friend of George’s shows her breasts to him.  The breasts are not seen.  George responds in a gentlemanly fashion and does not respond to her advance
  • Dan rubs a singer’s back seductively,  running his hand over her bottom and thighs
  • Ann’s bottom is squeezed whilst she is waitressing

Use of substances

There is some use of substances in this movie, including:

  • Multiple scenes of adults seen drinking in clubs. People are seen drinking in excess, stumbling and with slurred speech
  • Multiple scenes of adults seen drinking wine at dinner. At times one of the participants is seen to have drunk to excess, using a raised voice or threatening language.
  • Dan and a  woman are seen drunk, stumbling and holding onto one another
  • Robbie and George are offered a glass of champagne when their mother gets engaged (despite them being underage at the time)
  • Robbie, George and other adults are seen drinking beer and champagne at a beachside barbecue
  • Throughout the movie adult characters including Ann and Dan are constantly seen smoking cigarettes and cigars.

Coarse language

There is some coarse language in this movie, including:

  • Shit
  • Ass
  • Christ sake
  • Goddamn
  • Turd
  • Damn
  • Fuck
  • Bullshit
  • Crap
  • Horse shit
  • Hell
  • Pansy
  • Fairy
  • Bitch

In a nutshell

My One and Only is a road trip movie based on the true story of a mother and her sons who cross the country in search of a new life.

Values in this movie that parents may wish to reinforce with their children include:

  • family loyalty and devotion
  • self reliance

This movie could also give parents the opportunity to discuss with their children attitudes and behaviours, and their real-life consequences, such as

  • parental fallibility (Do Ann’s faults mean that she doesn’t love her sons?  How does this compare to the boys’ father?)
  • divorce and its impacts on children
  • single parenting in the 1950’s compared to modern day