Of all the Judd Apatow-era imitators, She’s Out of My League is one of the better ones. On the surface it’s the perfect male college flick (what average guy doesn’t dream about landing the hot girl?), but screenwriters Sean Anders and John Morris, scribes of the significantly more disgusting 2008 comedy, Sex Drive, inject enough heart and entertaining characters to keep the ship afloat, even during its more lackluster moments.
Kirk (Baruchel) is a down-and-out TSA employee who’s having a tough time getting over his ex, Marnie (Lindsay Sloane). It’s no wonder: she became so close with his family that she now brings her new boyfriend over for visits. Ouch. It’s another boring day until Kirk and his friends spot Molly (Eve), a bombshell event planner that’s running late for a flight. She accidentally leaves her phone in the terminal during the rush. Kirk, being the nice guy that he is, offers to return it to her. Upon meeting up the second time, she asks him out on a date. He’s a “5,” she’s a “hard ten.” Hardly any good usually comes from this scenario.
She’s Out of My League succeeds by not making Kirk a raging nerd, but rather an everyman that most guys will be able to relate to. As most guys know, the most attractive women are the ones who don’t know just how attractive they are. Molly was written to embody that, and both leads are very likeable. The real show stealers are Kirk’s friends (Miller, Vogel, and Torrence), whose combinations of good and bad advice set up some hilarious sequences. An extended scene in which Kirk tries to shave his nether regions is so over-the-top that most will wince and laugh simultaneously. Oh how much further things have been taken since American Pie. The scenes involving Kirk’s family become tiring, as they’re thinly written as Pittsburgh hicks.
Jay Baruchel, in his first lead role, does a solid job as Kirk. He seems to be channeling some kind of Adam Sandler speech pattern, but it works for his average-guy character. Alice Eve puts a contemporary spin on the character of the hot blonde. She plays Molly as a girl who knows what she wants in all aspects of life. The aforementioned friends are all excellent, with T.J. Miller excelling in a role that is all-too-similar to Seth Rogen’s in The 40-Year-Old Virgin.
There’s nothing groundbreaking or unforgettable to be seen in She’s Out of My League, though the pieces and parts here largely work. Everything plays out exactly as you’d expect, but the screenwriters have created some fun characters and the Pittsburgh locales look superb. The story is told from a guy-centric point of view, but women will enjoy the film’s insights and situations, realistic or not. The romantic comedy has been in the ditch for a while, so it’s extra nice to see some new life.
Studio: Paramount Pictures
Length: 104 Minutes
Rating: R for language and sexual content.
Theatrical Release: March 12, 2010
Directed by: Jim Field Smith
Written by: Sean Anders & John Morris.
Cast: Jay Baruchel, Alice Eve, T.J. Miller, Mike Vogel, Nate Torrence