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ON FAITH & MEDIA View Comments

She's Out of My League

By
John Mulderig
Source: Catholic News Service

A seemingly unlikely romance between a nerdy but good-hearted man and a fetching, sophisticated young woman could be the basis for a film exploring worthwhile themes such as the need to reject stereotypes and the value of basing lasting attachments on the appreciation of personal, rather than merely physical qualities.

In the raunchy romantic comedy "She's Out of My League" (Paramount), however, this premise becomes the launching pad for a barrage of sophomoric antics and frequently distasteful sight gags.

As scripted by Sean Anders and John Morris, and directed by Jim Field Smith, this is the tale of awkward, self-doubting Pittsburgh airport security agent Kirk (Jay Baruchel) whose life and romantic prospects are in limbo until he accidentally manages to attract the interest of comely party planner Molly (Alice Eve) when she leaves her cell phone behind while passing through his checkpoint, and he goes out of his way to return it to her.

On the rebound from her last relationship with her dashing but insufferably egotistical ex-boyfriend Cam (Geoff Stults), Molly appreciates Kirk's Boy Scout-like politeness as well as his quirky, self-deprecating sense of humor.

But Kirk's doubts that Molly could actually be attracted to him are reinforced by the cynical nay saying of his three slacker best friends and co-workers, Jack (Mike Vogel), Stainer (T.J. Miller) and Devon (Nate Torrence), who reduce all interaction between the sexes to a set of mathematical formulas whereby a "hard 10" like Molly couldn't possibly fall for Kirk, who is, they calculate, barely a "5.'

Also rooting for Kirk to fail is his ornery ex-girlfriend, Marnie (Lindsay Sloane).

Kirk's effort to make himself more sexually appealing by shaving a part of his anatomy well south of his chin—an endeavor in which he fails on his own and has to accept the supposedly comic help of one of his trio of buddies—and a scene where he becomes overexcited during the preliminaries of an encounter with Molly, only to have her parents arrive unexpectedly, typify the cringe-inducing version of comedy that prevails throughout.

The film contains pervasive sexual humor, rear nudity, brief nongraphic sexual activity, implicit approval of premarital sex, about 10 uses of profanity and constant rough and crude language, including at least 40 uses of the F-word. The USCCB Office for Film & Broadcasting classification is O—morally offensive. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is R—restricted. Under 17 requires accompanying parent or adult guardian.

*****
John Mulderig is on the staff of the Office for Film & Broadcasting of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops.


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Apollonia: The persecution of Christians began in Alexandria during the reign of the Emperor Philip. The first victim of the pagan mob was an old man named Metrius, who was tortured and then stoned to death. The second person who refused to worship their false idols was a Christian woman named Quinta. Her words infuriated the mob and she was scourged and stoned. 
<p>While most of the Christians were fleeing the city, abandoning all their worldly possessions, an old deaconess, Apollonia, was seized. The crowds beat her, knocking out all of her teeth. Then they lit a large fire and threatened to throw her in it if she did not curse her God. She begged them to wait a moment, acting as if she was considering their requests. Instead, she jumped willingly into the flames and so suffered martyrdom.</p><p>There were many churches and altars dedicated to her. Apollonia is the patroness of dentists, and people suffering from toothache and other dental diseases often ask her intercession. She is pictured with a pair of pincers holding a tooth or with a golden tooth suspended from her necklace. St. Augustine explained her voluntary martyrdom as a special inspiration of the Holy Spirit, since no one is allowed to cause his or her own death.</p> American Catholic Blog We can find Christ among the despised, voiceless, and forgotten of the world. We have to move beyond that which we wish to ignore and forget about: embrace the seemingly un-embraceable, love the unlovable, and dare to know what we most fear and wish to leave unknowable.

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