- Rated R
- Buy the BD
All photos © Paramount Pictures
Reviewed by Jason Zingale
he romantic comedy genre has gone through a pretty big evolution over the last five years, with Judd Apatow almost singlehandedly changing the game with movies like “The 40-Year-Old Virgin” and “Knocked Up.” But while there have been many imitators in that time, Jim Field Smith’s “She’s Out of My League” is one of the few movies to successfully channel Apatow’s unmistakable blend of sweet and raunchy comedy. It’s essentially frat boy humor with a heart, and although the film follows all the usual peaks and valleys of a typical rom-com, “She’s Out of My League” gets a pass for making me laugh even when it's at its most formulaic.
Apatow alum Jay Baruchel stars as Kirk Kettner, a dorky TSA employee who spends his days pining over the loss of his bitchy ex-girlfriend, Marnie (Lindsay Sloane). That is, until he meets Molly (Alice Eve), a drop-dead gorgeous event planner who invites Kirk to a hockey game as thanks for returning her phone after she left it behind at the airport. Kirk thinks he’s being set up with Molly’s friend, Patty (Krysten Ritter), so he’s a little surprised to discover that it’s Molly herself who’s interested. None of his friends can believe it either, claiming that a hard 10 like Molly would never be interested in a 5 like Kirk. But despite the fact that she’s out of his league, the two begin dating, only for his lack of confidence and the pressure from everyone around him to start chipping away at their relationship.
It’s a fairly predictable story, but writers Sean Anders and John Morris pack enough laughs into the film’s 105-minute runtime that you don’t really mind. Apatow may get all the credit for reinventing the genre, but Anders and Morris have certainly done their part as well having also penned 2008’s underrated sex comedy, “Sex Drive," and the upcoming “Hot Tub Time Machine.” Though “She’s Out of My League” isn’t nearly as raunchy as their last movie, it does have a few particularly funny gags involving pubic hair shaving and premature ejaculation that put the “American Pie” movies to shame.
With the exception of those moments, however, “She’s Out of My League” is a relatively tame R-rated comedy that relies more on the funny banter between Kirk and his friends than the kind of sex-driven humor you might be expecting. The cast is also a welcome treat, and although Jay Baruchel and Alice Eve are solid as the two leads, it’s the supporting characters who own the film. T.J. Miller and Nate Torrance, in particular, are an absolute riot as Kirk’s radically different friends, while Krysten Ritter steals the show once again as Molly’s acerbic gal pal. It’s hard to say whether the film would work quite as well without such reliable comic actors in the roles, because while “She’s Out of My League” is definitely no hard 10, the gap isn’t nearly as big thanks to their involvement.
Single-Disc Blu-Ray Review:
Paramount’s Blu-ray release of “She’s Out of My League” boasts all the extras you’d expect from a rom-com (deleted scenes, blooper reel, etc.), but the only one of worth is the audio commentary by director Jim Field Smith, who offers some good insight into the making of the film. There’s also a guide to dating hosted by Nate Torrence and Kyle Bornheimer, but it’s so absurdly bad that you’d be best to stay away from it altogether.