She’s Out of My League is one of many films that attempt to marry romantic comedy with a healthy dollop of lowbrow, crowdpleasing humour, in the manner of There’s Something About Mary. Unfortunately it doesn’t manage either strand as successfully as the Farrelly brothers.
The film is the story of an average guy called Kirk (Jay Baruchel) who, by a quirk of product placement, meets and starts dating Molly (Alice Eve). Molly is something of a looker, whereas the nicest thing you could say about Jay is pale but interesting. She is, on the face of it, very much out of his league, as she would be out of most people’s. Surely, then, the possibility of this relationship being a success is so against the odds as to be an offence to the laws of nature?
The script goes out to emasculate Kirk at the start, having him still pining for his ex-girlfriend after two years, and have her and her current boyfriend living with his parents. His entire family is so ghastly that they never rise above the level of cartoons. It’s made plain that Molly has her own neuroses, but some of these are left unresolved – a sub plot about her lying to her parents (played by Alice Eve’s real life parents) about her job is left dangling.
The film’s comic highlight comes when Kirk becomes over excited as Molly gets amorous, only for her parents to unexpectedly visit at the worst possible moment. It works because everyone can relate to the fear of this happening, even if they haven’t suffered it themselves.
The other amusing scenes come courtesy of Kirk’s little team of friends, who painstakingly explain that Molly is a 10, whereas Kirk is closer to 5 (and this includes points for being funny, and deductions for driving a crap car) – thinking that adds to Kirk’s lack of confidence. A lot of the other laughs are centred around knob gags, with varying degrees of success. Factor in Molly’s sharp-tongued sidekick Patty, and you have one of those films where the supporting cast are more fun than the leads.
So, watchable enough, quite amusing, but not really in the big leagues.