She’s Out of My League, directed by Jim Field Smith, is a movie along the lines of the comedic genre that Judd Apatow has developed over the past decade. The movie follows the story of Kirk (Jay Baruchel), an average guy who works security at an airport and has a less than stellar life. He is still infatuated with his ex-girlfriend, who has a new boyfriend and just happens to live with his parents, making for many very awkward moments. But Kirk’s life is about to change, as a dazzling beauty he meets at the airport amazingly falls for Kirk, which comes to quite a surprise to everybody around them, especially Kirk himself.
After a brief encounter at the airport, Kirk is handed the opportunity to return the lost phone of Molly (Alice Eve), a young woman who catches the eye of every single guy she walks by, whether they are with their wives or not. Kirk, being the nice young fellow he is, believes he is just doing a kind favor by returning it, and thinks nothing else of it. Molly is intrigued, however, by the simplicity and safeness of Kirk. After a couple of dates, it is brought to Kirk’s attention that Molly is “into him”, which almost nobody believes. As his friends would say, Kirk is a “5″, while Molly is a hard “10″. She’s a looker, she has plenty of money, and heck, she knows a lot about hockey! Who wouldn’t want her? Explained in detail by his best friend Stainer (T.J. Miller), one can only date someone within 2 points on the chart of love, meaning that Kirk has absolutely no chance of dating Molly, even if he were to magically gain two extra points. Kirk and Molly try and disprove this theory, though the odds are stacked against them and it’s only a matter of time before something comes between them.
Even though he wasn’t involved with this film, this film seems exactly like a Judd Apatow film. And like most Apatow films, a good chunk of the laughs come from an excellent supporting cast. Kirk is typically surrounded by three of his friends from work, and each of them has there own advice on what he should do with his situation. The main proponent of giving up on Molly is Stainer, played brilliantly by T.J. Miller, who was previously seen (or mostly unseen) as the camera holder in Cloverfield. Miller displays the best comedic timing of any of the cast, and is absolutely brilliant when getting in witty arguments with whoever tries to disagree with him. Equally appealing is Krysten Ritter, who plays Molly’s best friend and will come up with the most random insults that you can’t help but laugh at. Another appealing part of the movie that I liked quite well were the situations in which Kirk and his friends have their conversations, such as the four of them sitting on a baggage claim belt as it goes in circles. It’s creative settings like this that help set this movie apart from other recent comedies, but not quite enough to save itself from many flaws the film displays.
For me, the biggest flaw or weakness of this film would be the casting of the lead actor. While Baruchel was pretty solid in supporting roles of the more recent Frat-Pack movies, his acting in this movie was at times down right atrocious. While I get that he was trying to play somebody who was nervous and clueless most of the time, there were parts of the movie that he was so stiff that he made stationary objects next to him seem more agile. And this isn’t just one or two scenes, but throughout the entire movie, and it gets quite annoying. Another part of the film that can’t be overlooked is the extremely sloppy and lazy screenplay. One scene in particular is the introduction of Kirk’s family. The entrances come in blazing quick and often, barely giving you time to take it in. It was also the introduction of Adam LeFevre as Kirk’s father, quite possibly the worst piece of acting in the entire film. While the scenes with Kirk’s family can be funny at times, too often are they rushed, horribly acted, and counter-acts any of the other satisfying moments the rest of the movie tries to establish.
While the movie is good for several laughs, with most of them still very effective on the second viewing, some of the acting and a sloppy screenplay prevent this movie from being the enjoyable movie that it had the potential to be. Some comedies are able to overcome these flaws, but when the lead actor is one of the biggest weaknesses of the film, it’s just too much for a decent film to be rendered.
Notes: Rated R for language and sexual content.