She's Out Of My League

Director    John Field Smith
Starring    Jay Baruchel, Alice Eve, T.J Miller, Mike Vogel, Nate Torrence, Lindsey Sloane, Krysten Ritter
Release    12 MAR (US) 4 JUN (UK)
4 stars


10th June 2010

Please, stop me if you've heard all this before. An average guy meets an attractive woman, to the utter jealously of his buddies. However, because they love him, they want to help him and we as the audience feel we can relate to at least one of the core characters.

Sound familiar? Well it should - we saw it in The 40 Year-Old Virgin and again in Knocked Up. But that's not to say She's Out of My League, a film untouched by Judd, is just a lazy cash-in on the Apatow formula. This is a sweet-natured romantic comedy with its heart in the right place. Girls will like it because it's 'cute' and the leading man is 'sweet', us dudes will like it because there's swearing, toilet humour and Alice Eve has a big rack. It's like we're different species or something.

Jay Baruchel, breaking out into leading man status, plays nerdy Kirk, a gangly, awkward, bored airport security officer who falls for the beautiful Molly (Alice Eve) after a chance, flirty meeting at the airport. After recovering her lost phone, Molly asks Kirk out in way of thanks. Not believing his luck, Kirk, lacking self-esteem and body muscle, struggles to figure out why someone so perfect as Molly - with her sexy smile, blonde hair, lots of money, swanky apartment, big boobs and no pants - would be interested in the likes of him.

[gallery]Both Baruchel and Eve are likeable and charming together, with enough chemistry to convince as a couple. Barachel, who sat on the sidelines in Knocked Up but was a surprise highlight in Tropic Thunder, convinces in the romantic lead, gaining a few places in the lovable loser ranks (current #1 is still Michael Cera). Eve meanwhile, throws out the stereotypical gorgeous blonde to deliver a refreshingly down-to-earth performance. Despite coming across as faultless (not to mention the writers' unrealistic idea of the perfect woman), Eve shines in every scene she's in, especially when she dresses down to her underwear, right guys? Who's with me? (*holds for a high five*)

But like the usual Apatow crowd, our leading man would be nowhere without a close group of thoughtful friends, constantly supplying him with helpful advice, imaginative insults and piss-takes. There's the fat, married friend Devon (Nate Torrence) and the good-looking one with a shaved scrotum, Jack (Mike Vogel). However, it's stand-up comedian, T.J Miller (the guy holding the camera in Cloverfield) that comes out on top as foul-mouthed, socially inept, loud, fuzzy-haired, Stainer. If this film had been made between 2004 and 2006, Seth Rogen would have had that role. Like Rogen was then, Miller is certainly one to watch for the future.

Despite lacking originality and being as predictable as day turning into night, She's Out Of My League is a hell of a lot funnier than expected. Debut British director Jim Field Smith's combination of an instantly likeable cast, relatable premise and a solid flow of gags keeps it from becoming dull or sagging halfway through. It has what made The 40 Year-Old Virgin such a success - a heart - and it's a typical feel-good movie.

Crucially though, it makes the average guys (*points to self*) look awesome whilst the good-looking, self-important fellas are portrayed as total douches. And in the end, isn't that what life's all about?

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